Morocco, Israel could hold joint military exercises: reports
The defence pact recently signed by Morocco and Israel may soon result in joint military exercises between Moroccan, Israeli, and US forces, according to Israeli media reports on Friday.
Preliminary talks about joint drills took place between senior Israeli generals and their Moroccan counterparts during Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz’s landmark visit to Morocco earlier this week, according to an anonymous security source understood to be close to the deal.
The source was quoted in Hebrew language news outlets as saying: “the agreement we signed with Morocco creates a framework for action. A steering team will be formed, led by the Ministry of Defence, and in coordination with the Israeli army and other parties, which will work towards achieving bilateral goals. Soon there will be reciprocal visits by military delegations, and, in my estimation, also joint exercises”.
The source cautioned, however, that Gantz has not yet approved the details of such a deal, but indicated he is “optimistic” and “confident” that it could be achieved.
The source also added: “The Rabat talks raised Iran’s actions in the Middle East and Africa, its positioning in other regions outside the Middle East".
Israel and Morocco signed an agreement on Wednesday making it easier for Rabat to acquire high-tech Israeli security products, as the two countries expand ties following their normalisation deal last year.
The memorandum of understanding signed in Rabat by Gantz and Morocco's minister in charge of defence administration, Abdellatif Loudiyi, was "unprecedented" for the Jewish state, an Israeli official said.
Reports about Morocco-Israel military exercises come days after the UAE and Bahrain conducted a military maritime exercise with Israel and the US in the Red Sea last Wednesday.