Union Minister of Defence Rajnath Singh on Thursday received Israeli counterpart Benjamin Gantz who arrived in New Delhi on Wednesday, marking three decades of diplomatic relations between the two nations. Gantz received a Tri-service Guard of Honour in the presence of Singh. Israeli Defence Minister, in presence of Singh, laid a wreath at the National War Memorial. Gantz also held a bilateral meeting with the Union Defence Minister at Vigyan Bhawan and both leaders shook hands.
#LIVE | Israel Defence Minister Benny Gantz visits National War Memorial in Delhi, pays tribute to soldiers; Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also present— Republic (@republic) June 2, 2022
Tune in here - https://t.co/ihYQd1aeaj pic.twitter.com/MjxPuXrfwl
Israeli Defence Minister Benjamin Gantz inspected the Guard of Honour in the presence of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi pic.twitter.com/9VuPVIolCn— ANI (@ANI) June 2, 2022
Gantz will also be meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss the expansion of cooperation between India and Israel. Israeli Defence Minister arrived in the country this month after his originally-scheduled trip in March was postponed after he tested positive for COVID-19 in the backdrop of a flurry of terror attacks in Israel which left dozens of casualties.
Prior to Gantz’s visit, even though his office did not specify the details, it said that he will be meeting and signing an agreement with the Union Defence Minister. Both Singh and Gantz previously spoke on phone in March when the Israeli Defence Minister informed the Union Minister about the postponing of the March 30-31 trip due to unprecedented situations. Israeli media has previously reported that the meeting between both the ministers would include talks on elevating ties between Tel Aviv and New Delhi.
An Israeli media report had also stated that especially in recent years, Tel Aviv has sought to enhance defence ties with New Delhi pertaining to fields of air and missile defence. It is to note here that 2022 also marks the completion of 30 years of India-Israel diplomatic ties.
Earlier, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishnakar visited Israel from October 17, 2021, to October 21, 2021. Last year, both nations signed the instrument of ratification of the International Solar Alliance. Even PM Modi had met with Israeli counterpart Naftali Bennett and Palestinian PM Mohammad Shtayyeh in November 2021 during the sidelines of the Climate Summit in Glasgow, COP 26.