A six-member Indian team headed by the chief of the government’s defense research agency will make an unpublicized visit to Israel next week to seek technical help with several indigenous missile development programs.
Officials in the Indian Defence Ministry told DefenseNews.com Sept. 23 that the government does not wish to make Indo-Israeli defense relations public and refused to divulge the exact schedule and agenda of the visit.
A senior missile scientist at the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) said the visit by DRDO head Vasudev Aatre to Israel is aimed at establishing deeper collaboration by seeking help in development of the 3,000-kilometer range Agni-3 ballistic missile. DRDO also will seek Israel’s help in fine-tuning the new inertial navigation system for the indigenous, short-range, sea-skimming Dhanush missile, which DRDO has developed for the Indian Navy.
Other indigenous missile projects DRDO officials will discuss with Israel include the short-range Astra, and a possible anti-missile system based on the Israeli Arrow-2 that would be tailored to Indian needs.
DRDO scientists noted that Aatre had a two-hour private meeting with Amos Mayer, Israeli Ministry of Defense export chief, Sept. 9 during a visit by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to New Delhi.
Meanwhile, an Indian Army artillery team is in Israel to witness trials of the Israeli Long Range Artillery missile.