By LIZZIE AGBAJI
ISRAEL- Israel says it is ready to support Nigeria in the areas of Intelligence sharing, modern combat equipmentand extraction of relevant information to effectively win the ongoing war against terrorism.
Retired lt.-Col. Jonathan Konricus, who served in the Israel Defence Force (IDF)said this in Jerusalem while answering questions from some Nigerian journalists who are in Israel on a media tour.
Responding to questions from Journalists, on how Israel is willing to support Nigeria in fighting terrorism and insecurity in Nigeria, Kornicous said “what Israel has is a lot of experience.
“Therefore, sharing knowledge, strategies and tactics on how to deal with terror organisation is one.
“Second is training, how to train forces better, the second thing is how to train forces in order to deal with counter terrorism or counter Gorilla operations.
“Another thing is equipment, equipment is very important, intelligence, and combat equipment, how to collect intelligence on your enemies and how to have the fire power and necessary tools to strike the enemy.
“Those are three elements that Israel can and is involved in few of the cases.
“Intelligence is key and Israel spends a quarter of its defence budget on generating intelligence, sensors, analysis, manpower, and that is what really gives us the upper hand against our enemies.
“However, it is very key especially in fighting terror organisations that are using civilians of making it impossible to distinguish between civilians are combatants.
“For any nation to effectively combat terror organisations, you need equipment, you need manpower, you need the manpower to be trained adequately in other to deal effectively with counter terror operations,” Kornicous said.
Kornicous said that Israel knowing how prone it is from attacks have invested in interception which had a 92 per cent success rate of interception when Hamas and Islamic Jihad fired 4,400rockets at Israel in 11 days in May 2021.
Responding to questions on how Israeli communities in volatile communities have built resilience, Kornicous said that there is a close connection and collaboration between commuters and security agencies.
”Israel has at least 75 years of experience and in many cases more communities were subjected to attacks by different organisations, It is not a new thing.
“It is a reality, part of the DNA of Israeli communities whereby there is always a close connection between the communities and the security organisations, and mostly the IDF which is responsible for an area.
“We have specific personnel in each and every community, they have their fast response teams in every community, which is equipped by the military and trained by the military.
”What we have learned is that you have to have a quick first response on the ground within minutes to respond to an attack by terrorists.
“The first response made by locals is very important,” Kornicous added.
The News Agenct of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Israel and Nigeria first established diplomatic, cultural, and economic ties officially in 1960 after Nigerian independence was established.
Israel contributed significantly to the development of Nigeria as well as other Sub-Saharan African countries in the 1960’s and 1970’s by sending Israeli experts and volunteers to modernize Africa’s agriculture and and teach African farmers sustainable farming techniques. Since 1992 Israel and Nigeria have enjoyed a friendly and mutually beneficial relationship, with more than 50 Israeli companies investing in Nigerian construction, infrastructure, technology, communications and information technology, agriculture, and water management industries.
A Memorandum of Interest (MOU) was signed between the Nigerian and Israeli Ministries of Foreign Affairs in 2006, formalizing bilaterial consultations on political issues.
This MOU facilitated increased dialogue and cooperation between the two countries on issues of regional and international concern.
Economic ties between Israel and Nigeria are promoted by the Nigerian-Israeli Chamber of Commerce, and the Israel-Africa Chamber of Commerce. (NAN)