Israel has been selling advanced military systems and equipment to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for more than eight years, Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper revealed.
The paper’s military affairs correspondent, Alex Fishman, said the Director of the Mossad, Yossi Cohen, and Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, asked the Ministry of Public Security to grant additional permissions to sell more advanced weapons to the UAE in the context of efforts that preceded the Israeli-Emirati normalisation agreement as well as for economic reasons.
According to the paper, Israel selling advanced and offensive weapons to the UAE in 2010, after the assassination of Hamas leader, Muhammad Al-Mabhouh, in a Dubai hotel.
At the time, the Director of the Mossad, Tamir Pardo, travelled to the UAE to solve the crisis between the two countries, but Abu Dhabi’s condition was to supply it with advanced weapons systems, the paper said.
Prior to that, Israel used to prohibit the sale of advanced offensive weapons to the UAE for fear that it may direct the weapons at hostile parties, including Israel.
On the other hand, an extensive report by Israel’s the Marker newspaper indicated that Logic Industries, affiliated with Israeli businessman Mati Kochavi of the Israeli security company AGT International which is based in Zurich, has been active in the UAE since 2008.
According to the Maker’s report, the company has concluded deals worth more than $7 billion including providing the UAE with high-security services such as surveillance cameras and sensors.
On 13 August, US President Donald Trump announced a peace deal between the UAE and Israel brokered by Washington.
Abu Dhabi said the deal was an effort to stave off Tel Aviv’s planned annexation of the occupied West Bank, however, opponents believe normalisation efforts have been in the offing for many years as Israeli officials have made official visits to the UAE and attended conferences in the country which had no diplomatic or other ties with the occupation state.
However, Netanyahu repeated on 17 August that annexation is not off the table, but has simply been delayed.