Thursday, February 25, 2021

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India-Israel Relations In Doubt Over India’s Allegiance With Palestine, Iran

Will India-Israel relations last long? While Indian PM Narendra Modi is leaving no stone unturned in making India the friendliest nation of the world, an Israeli daily has raised questioned over whether the India-Israel relations would continue for long owing to the relations India has with Iran and Palestine. PM Narendra Modi, according to the Haaretz, is trying for a marriage with Israel while refusing to divorce Palestine and Iran.

The Haaretz author spoke of the Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s six-day tour of India during the month of January, which came as a response to PM Narendra Modi’s previous visit to Israel in July 2017. While the visits show a shift in diplomatic India-Israel relations, it is still a point to consider whether the relations would last long, as Palestine and Iran still continue to pose a threat to the same.

Modi had in a way made a historic mark by visiting Israel last year and became the first-ever visit to Israel by a serving Indian Prime Minister. The newspapers had hailed the moment with bold headlines screaming of the red carpet rolled out for Modi. The two world leaders further tagged the visit and relations in their own way with Netanyahu calling it a ‘marriage made in heaven’ while Modi declared I4I (India for Israel and Israel for India). Netanyahu further went ahead and announced I4F (Israel India Innovation Initiative Fund) with a USD 40 million fund from which USD 4 million would be allocated per year.

Read: India-Israel Sign MoU For Cooperation In Space Exploration

Arms & Weapons – The Main Deal For India-Israel Relations

India-Israel relations have long been strengthened over the supply of arms and weapons by Israeli leaders to their Indian counterparts. It all started with the supply during the war against China in 1962 when David Ben-Gurion supplied weapons to the Jawaharlal Nehru led India. Then again, in 1971, India received weapons from Israeli PM Golda Meir while the former was in preparation for the war against Pakistan. Even today, India continues to be one of the most lucrative markets for the Israeli weapons industry as according to a report by PSC, 40 percent of India’s weapons are either obsolescent or totally obsolete.

However, despite this cordial bond between Modi and Netanyahu to strengthen the India-Israel relations, there are rising concerns over its continuity as India continues to show tremendous support for Palestine. MEA of India, Sushma Swaraj, was once quoted as saying that the support for Palestine has always been an important point in India’s foreign policy. Similarly, the relations between India and Iran are a topic of hot discussion when it comes to India-Israel relations due to the uncomfortable situations between Israel and Iran. Haaretz says it is now to be seen what stand the Indian government takes in case the Israel-Palestine conflict heats up further.

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