Israel, Germany to discuss missile ships

Israel, Germany to discu

meko missile ship 88 (photo credit: )
meko missile ship 88
(photo credit: )
A German defense delegation will arrive in Israel next month for high-level talks to focus on an Israeli request to purchase two Meko-class missile ships. The delegation will be led by senior officials from the German Defense Ministry and the German Navy. Talks on the Israeli side will be led by Defense Ministry director-general Pinhas Buchris and Navy commander Vice Admiral Eliezer Marom. While the Navy has yet to finalize its order, it is working on a concept under which the 2,000-ton ship would be designed by the German company Blohm and Voss, which manufactures the Meko family of warships. The design would be similar to the existing Israeli Sa'ar 5-class ship but would be slightly larger, to enable it to carry the massive IAI-made Adir radar, capable of providing an extensive over-the-horizon radar view. The ship will be capable of carrying special forces and larger infantry units as well as midsize vehicles, alongside at least one helicopter. The ship will also be installed with the anti-ship Harpoon Missile, as well as the Barak anti-missile defense system. Each ship is expected to cost over $300 million, and Israel is hoping that the German government will provide part of the funding, as it has in the past for Israeli submarines. Germany is currently building two Dolphin-class submarines for Israel, expected to become operational in the next few years.