Israel has been bracing for an expanded security market
Industry sources said the Israeli government and industry were
intensifying talks with European Union states in efforts to stop attacks by
Al Qaida and Islamic State of Iraq and Levant. The sources said the dialogue
with individual EU members included sales of weapons, advanced
reconnaissance and counter-insurgency training.
“The feeling in Europe is that Brussels will not provide operational
help,” a senior industry source said. “So, it’s every country for itself.”
The sources have already reported sales of security equipment to such
countries as Britain, France, Germany, Poland and Spain. They said the Al
Qaida attack on a French magazine in Paris in January 2015 would accelerate
“I can’t elaborate here, but Israeli products have already been sold to
counter-terrorism agencies abroad and to foreign police forces, in Europe
too,” Itamar Graff, a senior Israeli Defense Ministry official, said.
In an interview with the Israeli news agency Ynet, Graff, who works for
the Defense Ministry’s export agency, said EU states were preparing budgets
for additional procurement. The official said Israel could help EU security
agencies in dealing with the so-called “lone terrorist.”
“Israel has a lot of know-how when it comes to early detection and
coping with a terrorist incident,” Graff said.
Israel has sought to expand its homeland security market in wake of Al
Qaida’s suicide air attacks in the United States in 2001. The sources said
homeland security, with such products as mini-assault rifles, door-busters,
X-ray cameras, consisted of less than 10 percent of Israel’s defense exports
of $6.5 billion in 2013.
The sources said the European market would require Israeli companies to
work with a partner in each country. They said many Israeli companies
have reached agreements for joint ventures and marketing in at least six EU