MAFAT, Public Security Ministry sign tech cooperation deal

Defense R&D will assist the ministry in developing and advancing processes in technological areas where there are operational gaps.

IDF soldiers are seen taking part in military drills in Israel's North to simulate a war with Hezbollah. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
IDF soldiers are seen taking part in military drills in Israel's North to simulate a war with Hezbollah.
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

The Israeli Defense Ministry’s Directorate of Research and Development (DDR&D, or MAFAT in Hebrew) has signed a technological cooperation agreement with the Public Security Ministry.

The agreement will promote projects in both the defense and civil areas and will see MAFAT assist the ministry in developing and advancing processes in technological areas where there are operational gaps, such as reducing crime, locating weapons, using drones and more.

According to the Defense Ministry, some of the projects have already been used during Operation Guardian of the Walls in May when riots broke out in mixed Arab-Jewish cities such as Lod and Jaffa, as well as in the South where Bedouin threw rocks at cars driving along the highways.

Two people were killed in Lod. Yigal Yehoshua was stoned by Arab rioters, and Mussa Hassuna was shot dead by Jewish vigilantes. Several civilians were injured, including Saeed Moussa, who was seriously injured after he was attacked by a mob in the city of Bat Yam.

The agreement signed on Thursday includes the Israel Police, Fire and Rescue Service, and Prison Service.

US police delegation in Israel for joint counter-terror consultations ahead of Sept.11 anniversary (credit: ISRAEL POLICE)US police delegation in Israel for joint counter-terror consultations ahead of Sept.11 anniversary (credit: ISRAEL POLICE)

“The cooperation with the Public Security Ministry will promote research and development of dual-use technologies that will directly help deal with security challenges,” said MAFAT head Brig.-Gen. (Res.) Danny Gold.

“The cooperation and exchange of knowledge with the civilian sector are a win-win for all parties,” he said. “Investing in dual-use technologies will yield changes for the defense establishment and will propel Israeli high-tech forward.”

MAFAT is responsible for developing innovative concepts for defense technology, managing the Defense Ministry’s short- and long-term projects, overseeing the research and development of defense technology and working with international partners, as well as training the next generation of Israel’s defense technology professionals.

The agency works with the IDF and civilian companies, and engages in extensive cooperation with many countries around the world. It is critical in providing the technology that makes it possible for the IDF to outflank its enemies.

Public Security Ministry Director-General Tomer Lotan welcomed the signing of “a unique strategic agreement” in the field of technology between the two bodies.

“The direction that the ministry is leading is to focus on promoting research and technological development and then to have them absorbed among the internal security bodies in Israel,” he said, adding that the deal shows “the important place of the world of internal security in the concept of Israel’s national security.”