Israel has offered Austria 20 Kfir interceptor fighters in exchange for industrial and agricultural products, government sources said. Under the projected arms-for-products deal Austrian exports to Israel would include steel, timber, railway equipment and agricultural products.
Austrian news media described the Israeli offer as “very attractive” but feared that such a deal would annoy Austria’s trade partners in the Arab world. Other offers include the French Mirage F-1, Sweden’s Viggen and the U.S. Northrop SF-5. Defense Minister Karl Leutgendorf is pressing for sophisticated interceptor fighters designated to safeguard Austria’s neutral policy.
Chancellor Bruno Kreisky, however, has opposed the fighter deal, maintaining that there is a lot of other equipment the army needs more urgently. The government is expected to make a decision later in the year.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.