Myanmar has appointed a military attaché to Israel, local media reported Thursday. According to Israel’s KAN Radio, a delegation of senior officials from Myanmar is in Israel and met with Communications Minister Ayoob Kara in his Knesset office on Wednesday.
A military attaché will participate in conferences and tours organised by the Israeli army. In fact, a representative of Myanmar’s military attended an Israeli Air Force conference several months ago. The attaché from the former Burma also attended another conference which included an arms show. The radio report pointed out that this took place while the European Union was drafting sanctions against the Myanmar generals.
Observers see the appointment of a military attaché to Israel as a sign of continued close military cooperation between Tel Aviv and a state accused by the UN of carrying out massacres and ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya Muslim minority. Indeed, Western media reports last year revealed that Israel was the main exporter of weapons to Myanmar during the summer. Tel Aviv and Myanmar have an agreement on the sale of Israeli-made weapons and the exchange of information and intelligence.
The Myanmar army is accused of committing atrocities against the Rohingya Muslims, including rape, murder, house burning and population displacement. However, Tel Aviv refused to stop arms sale to the government in Naypyidaw, despite international criticism that the Israeli weapons were used against the Rohingya.