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Israel, Bahrain Sign New Defense Memo in Signal Toward Iran

Gantz was joined by the commander of Israel’s navy as well as Bahrain’s defense minister on the tour of the 5th Fleet.
Israel, Bahrain sign new defense memo in signal toward Iran
FILE – Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, speaks during a meeting with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon, Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021, in Washington. Gantz on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, visited the headquarters of the U.S. 5th Fleet in Bahrain, in a show of cooperation aimed at sending a message toward archenemy Iran. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Israel and Bahrain signed a defense agreement Thursday as part of a show of cooperation aimed at sending a message toward archenemy Iran.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz signed the memorandum of understanding with his Bahraini counterpart in the capital of Manama, a key step after the two nations normalized ties in 2020.

He called the agreement “a new high point” in the countries’ relationship that will help protect other countries in the region. Earlier, Gantz and his Bahraini counterpart visited the headquarters of the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet, which is based in the strategically located Persian Gulf country.

Gantz’s office said the agreement is designed to “help advance intelligence cooperation, a framework for exercises” and strengthen ties between the countries’ defense industries. The memorandum is Israel’s second with an Arab nation after Gantz signed one with Morocco last year.

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