UK military chief visited Israel 'secretly' this week

November 2, 2011 18:42


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British military chief Sir David Richards visited Israel this week, an army source confirmed on Wednesday, following a Hebrew media report which said he arrived in secret.

Richards was a guest of IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, the source told The Jerusalem Post.

He arrived as "part of an annual visit" aimed at maintaining international cooperation, the source added.

The source did not give a reason for the secrecy surrounding the event, but the Walla news agency cited "elements who knew of the visit" as saying that it was of an attempt to keep relations between Israel and NATO member states on a "low profile." Walla added that the British were keen to avoid giving the impression of having close military relations with Israel, during a time when reports of a future potential Israeli strike on Iran were rife.

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