India To Develop Missile Jointly With Israel

India plans to develop a missile jointly with Israel for the former’s armed forces.
The Indian Defence Ministry confirmed the news over the weekend, saying in a statement that New Delhi and Jerusalem would strike an INR 170,000 million deal in June. The Indian ministry also said that the deal would be finalised ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the West Asian country later this year.
A senior Defence Ministry official, who wished to remain anonymous, told the press that the Modi government recently approved the deal as India was eager to develop a Medium Range Surface-To-Air (MR-SAM) missile system (jointly with Israel) with a striking range of 50-70km for its Army. He claimed that it would be the latest version of SAM systems currently being used by the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force.
The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), headed by PM Modi, has allowed India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to develop the missile together with Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI). As per the draft of the proposed agreement, the two countries will develop five regiments of the missile that consists of 40 units and 200 missiles. “The system will be based on the older Barak system of Israel, which is in use in India. It is being changed as per requirements,” added the official. He expressed hope that India would receive the missile in 2023.
Currently, India holds talks with Israel for the purchase of two more long-range Phalcon Airborne Warning And Control System (AWACS) that will cost nearly INR 75,000 million.
India, which enjoys close defence ties with Israel and Russia, is operating three Phalcon AWACS Israeli radars that are mounted on Russian IL-76 transport aircraft. India is using the Russian aircraft on the basis of a USD 1 billion tripartite deal with Moscow signed in 2003. Earlier this month, Kremlin revealed that India recently ordered two IL-76 aircraft that would be converted to AWACS.
Meanwhile, a top Israeli official has welcomed New Delhi’s decision to develop missile together with Jerusalem, stressing: “We are hopeful of a deal during Mr Modi’s visit in June. Discussions are under way for additional long-range drones. India and Israel have stepped up their defence relations since Mr Modi came to power.”

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