India and Israel have been moving closer on defense for some time, and at this point the relationship is downright cozy. Israel is India’s second-greatest weapons supplier, and the trade is growing. But India has kept quiet about its affection for its politically contentious friend. No longer, reports Live Mint:
Israel on Wednesday strongly backed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Make in India” pitch and said the maiden visit by its defence minister was a sign that the defence relationship was “out of closet” now.Asked whether his visit was an indication that India was willing to acknowledge the strong defence relations that the two countries share, Israeli defence minister Moshe Ya’alon said, “That is right. We were ready to expose relations earlier but it was up to the Indian government to take it out from the closet.” Ya’alon, the first Israeli defence minister to visit India since the two countries established full diplomatic relations in 1992, is here to attend the “Aero India” show and hold talks with his Indian counterpart Manohar Parrikar.
Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh tweeted his support for the newly open relationship:
During my visit to Israel in November last year I had invited Israel to become a partner in 'Make in India' initiative in the defence sector— Rajnath Singh (@BJPRajnathSingh) February 19, 2015
Israel had expressed its desire to share cutting-edge weapons technologies with India. Both the countries are willing to move forward.— Rajnath Singh (@BJPRajnathSingh) February 19, 2015