WASHINGTON (JTA) — Israel will send a warship to join a NATO anti-terror force, bolstering its ties with the alliance.
An Israeli missile ship will join NATO’s Active Endeavor naval force in the Middle East within the next few months, according to media repots. The force works to prevent the passage of terrorists and weapons of mass destruction in addition to protecting the security of the shipping industry in the region.
Israel already had a liaison officer with the force, but its defense officials say having a ship as part of the force is a major step forward in the Jewish state’s relations with NATO.
Israel is not a member of NATO, but other non-NATO countries, such as Russia and Ukraine, are also part of the force.
Plans are for an Israeli ship to occasionally join one of the force’s monthlong operations, and that the force would try to avoid Israeli ships approaching the shore lines of Arab countries with which it does not have diplomatic relations.