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Report: Company building ships for Israeli navy owned by Lebanese official

Israeli television has reported that a company building warships for the Israeli Navy is owned by the family of Samir Moqbel, Lebanon's defence minister until last week.

According to the Channel 2 report broadcast yesterday, the construction of four ships was agreed in a 2015 deal worth $480 million between Israel and German company ThyssenKrupp, which then subcontracted the work to the Moqbel-owned shipyard, now called German Naval Yards Kiel.

As described by the Times of Israel, Channel 2 claimed that "the true ownership of the company emerged when Zionist Union MK Erel Margalit recently sent an urgent letter to Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, calling on him to open an investigation into the affair."

Margalit wrote that "he recently met with 'senior sources' during a trip to Europe, who informed him of the true ownership of the shipyard."

"The fact that one of the owners of the company building naval vessels for Israel is the defence minister of a country designated as an enemy state, and who, according to reports, cooperated with the Hezbollah organisation and Iran, sets off a warning light," said the MK.

Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported last week that the four ships are under construction in a shipyard owned by Lebanese and Abu Dhabi-based companies named Abu Dhabi MAR, "but said officials insist no classified information about the warships is at risk."

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