TEL AVIV (Apr. 23)
Israel is supplying weapons and military aircraft to Guatemala on a business basis without the Israel government’s involvement, Haaretz reported Thursday. The newspaper quoted Guatemala’s Defense Minister, Gen. Hector Alejandro Gramajo Morales, as telling its correspondent at an interview in Guatemala City that his country has “broad military relations” with Israel conducted by private Israeli businessmen, not on government levels.
Gramajo said his country receives “several basic items for our army. We benefit from these relations which are primarily commercial,” Haaretz reported. Asked if Israel was Guatemala’s main source of arms, he replied, “It is a supply source for us, but I wouldn’t say that it is the sole supply source and I wouldn’t say that it’s the most important.”
Guatemala receives arms from other countries, including Taiwan and South Korea. Gramajo said, according to Haaretz, “In our stocks there are (Israel-made) Galil rifles, Arava planes and communications equipment. We have ongoing supply ties (with Israel) and we have good relations. We are working together on these matters.”