As the world grapples with the Coronavirus health crisis, Iran has leveled unprecedented allegations against Israel's spy agency, Mossad. Iran's state media claimed that Mossad has been running 'clandestine operations' and 'nabbing' medical supplies.
Israel recorded 7,851 positive Coronavirus cases and 44 deaths until Sunday morning.
"Israel's spy agency Mossad has been running clandestine operations to sneak medical supplies in Israel. In early March, Mossad nabbed 100,000 virus test kits. It became clear later that the kits were faulty," Iran's Press TV said.
The Jerusalem Post had reported that Mossad had "obtained" 100,000 testing kits overnight on March 19 to combat the COVID-19 outbreak. The report further warned of 'additional Mossad operations' which could bring up to 4 million testing kits to the Middle Eastern country. However, despite securing Coronavirus tests, Israeli officials later reported that the kits were wrong. Israel's PM Benjamin Netanyahu sought Mossad's help, asking them to find medical supplies through their web of intelligence networks. It was then reported by local media outlets, and experts that the Israeli intelligence agency approached Muslim, Arab countries with whom Israel does not share diplomatic ties, for medical supplies.
The head of Israel's shadowy Shin Bet internal security service said on Tuesday that his agency received Cabinet approval overnight to start deploying its counter-terrorism tech measures to help curb the spread of the new coronavirus in Israel. Netanyahu acknowledged that technology had never been used before on civilians and would involve a certain degree of violation of privacy. But he said the unprecedented health threat posed by the virus justified its use.
Israeli Health Ministry on Friday announced that only those with travel histories will be tested for the novel Coronavirus, despite the symptoms. Citing a shortage of medical equipment to test, the country in the Middle East narrowed the scope of testing. Israel's Health Minister Yaakov Litzman has tested positive for COVID-19, forcing all top leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Mossad chief Yossi Cohen, and National Security Adviser Meir Ben Shabbat, to go into quarantine, officials said on Thursday. Prime Minister Netanyahu had earlier gone into seven-day self-isolation after a close aide was found to have contracted the deadly virus, but he has so far tested negative. His quarantine had ended Wednesday night.
(With AP inputs)