Israeli navy officer to be stationed permanently in Bahrain

Israeli navy officer to be stationed permanently in Bahrain
An Israeli navy officer has been appointed in a permanent position in Bahrain, following the signing of a defence agreement between the two countries last week.
2 min read
11 February, 2022
Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz (left) signed a defence agreement with his Bahrain counterpart Abdullah bin Hassan al-Nuaimi last week [Getty]

An Israeli navy officer is set to be permanently stationed in Bahrain, Israel's Channel 13 reported on Thursday.

The senior navy officer, who is set to arrive in Bahrain in the next few weeks, is the first to be positioned under the security pact between the two countries signed after diplomatic ties between Tel Aviv and Manama were established more than a year ago.

The officer, whose name is yet to be revealed, will be in charge of maintaining communications with the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet, which is based in the Gulf country.

The move was agreed upon during Defence Minister Benny Gantz’s first visit to Manama last week, when he visited the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet headquarters alongside his Bahraini counterpart and US Vice Admiral Brad Cooper.

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Gantz, who signed a defence agreement with King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa, welcomed "the longstanding partnership" between the US Navy and Israel and added that the "deepening cooperation will help defend against the common enemy of Israel the United States and Bahrain".

He also said during his visit that the memorandum of understanding, which covers intelligence, procurement and joint training, takes the countries' relationship to "new heights", and called for deeper cooperation with Gulf partners to confront "maritime and aerial threats".

Last week, Israel also participated in a US-led naval exercise alongside 60 nations, including the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Oman, according to Reuters.

Bahrain became the fourth Arab state to sign a normalisation deal with Israel in September 2020, drawing condemnation from Palestinians.