Cyprus Mail

Defence minister in Israel to discuss bilateral relations

Υπουργός Άμυνας Συμβούλιο Εξωτερικών Υποθέσεων ΕΕ

Defence Minister Charalambos Petrides met his Israeli counterpart Benny Gantz in Tel Aviv on Thursday to discuss bilateral relations, the ongoing cooperation on armaments and the trilateral pact between Cyprus, Israel and Greece.

Speaking to the media after the meeting, Petrides, touching upon the recent upsurge of violence in Israel, defended the country’s right to defend itself from terrorist attacks.

He also expressed deep regret for the victims of the attacks and welcomed the ceasefire agreement, underling Egypt’s role in the negotiations.

On his part, Gantz underlined the long-standing friendship between Israel and Cyprus.

“It was a pleasure to welcome my Cypriot counterpart during a visit that reflects the great bond and excellent defence relations between our countries,” he wrote on Twitter.

“It is very meaningful to host a true friend of Israel following the challenges we have recently faced as a nation.”

Following the meeting with Gantz, Petrides also held talks with Israel’s National Security Advisor Eyal Hulata, with whom he discussed cooperation and developments in the wider Eastern Mediterranean region.

He then went on to visit the Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the Holy Sepulchre, where he met Patriarch Theophilos, the current Patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem.

Finally, Petrides headed to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, where he laid a wreath in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, and the Allied Cemetery in Ramla, where he paid his respects to the 11 Cypriots who died during the Second World War and who were buried on the premises.

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