web analytics
December 10, 2016 / 10 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘NATO’

ZAKA Divers Participate in NATO Exercise

Thursday, November 3rd, 2016

The ZAKA Divers Unit was, for the first time, invited to participate in a NATO international search, rescue and recovery exercise as part of an official Israeli National Emergency Management Authority delegation, which took place this week in Montenegro with participants from 27 countries.

The exercise enacted a scenario in which the rivers in Montenegro flooded large populated areas, home to around 640,000 residents. As a result, villages were badly damaged, around 40,000 houses were flooded, and thousands of citizens were adversely affected. Following the national disaster, the government turned to NATO, requesting assistance in rescue and recovery of the injured and dead, and supplying food and water to the residents.

zaka-divers-unit-in-a-nato-international-search-rescue-and-recovery-exercise

Twenty-seven countries from around the world responded to the request and sent rescue and medical teams, including the State of Israel via the National Emergency Management Authority that instructed the emergency and rescue forces to send professional delegations. The 24-strong Israeli delegation, that left for Montenegro on Sunday (October 30), included seven members of the ZAKA Divers Unit, the Fire and Rescue Authority’s central unit, and representatives of the Search and Rescue units from the Home Front Command and the Ministry of Defense.

The Israeli rescue teams, including members of the ZAKA International Rescue Unit headed by Mati Goldstein, brought half a ton of equipment worth hundreds of thousands of shekels, and quickly began their search and rescue missions, bringing tens of people to safety. The rescue teams worked in an area under especially harsh conditions, with the water temperature only around 7oC (44F). According to the exercise scenario, some of the bridges had collapsed, roads were destroyed, and the volunteers were mostly moving from place to place by boat. The ZAKA Divers Unit used the ZAKA Scooter, an underwater motorized scooter, developed exclusively by ZAKA, that is intended for searching for missing people underwater.

ZAKA Divers Unit in a NATO international search, rescue and recovery exercise

ZAKA International Rescue Unit commander Mati Goldstein said in a statement: “We found several people whose car was underwater, but they had managed to extricate themselves from it and climb onto it or a higher level. Some had been waiting there for three days – we rescued them together with members of the Fire and Rescue Authority’s central unit,” related

zaka-divers-unit-in-a-nato-international-search-rescue-and-recovery-exercise-3

ZAKA Divers Unit commander Haim Outmezgine said in a statement: “This was a very important exercise – our first NATO exercise – with complex rescue challenges. The ability to work together with the firefighting and rescue teams from around the world allowed us to execute the task perfectly, while earning the admiration of the exercise organizers and accumulating significant knowledge for the ZAKA Divers Unit. Without a doubt, participating in such an exercise has given us greater knowledge and experience for use in real-life situations.”

Photo of the Day

Turkish PM Denies Russia Demanding to Use NATO Nuke Base

Sunday, August 21st, 2016

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Russia is not demanding to land its planes in the İncirlik air base in southern Turkey, as several Russian news services have claimed. “Russia had no demands to use İncirlik air base, those reports are not true,” Yildirim told foreign correspondents in Istanbul on Saturday, according to Hurriyet Daily News. However, the prime minister did agree that should Russia wish to use the base for its operations against ISIS, it would be welcome to do so. Still, Yildirim added, “Russia doesn’t need to use the base. They have bases in Syria.”

Yildirim’s statement concluded an anxiety-filled few days in which Russian news sources were announcing that Russia has been demanding that Turkey give its air force access to the NATO air base in İncirlik, which is where US and coalition air forces take off on their strikes in Syria. Located some 65 miles from the Syrian border, Incirlik is also where an estimated 50 US B-61 nuclear warheads (think 100 Hiroshimas times 50) are kept.

According to Izvestia, a Russian lawmaker named Igor Morozov said it was only a matter of time before Turkish president Erdogan hands over the NATO base at Incirlik to the Russians, to intensify the war against ISIS. “You’ll see, the next base will be İncirlik,” Morozov told Izvestia, shortly after the Kremlin had revealed that Russian bombers have been using an Iranian airbase for their attack on Syria. He predicted İncirlik would be “one more victory for Putin.”

Those statements came against the background of a report by EurActiv, a Belgian foundation focusing on European Union policies, that the US has begun to transfer its nuclear weapons stationed in Turkey to Romania, for fear of the worsening relations between Washington and Ankara.

EurActiv cites a Stimson issue paper from August 2016, suggesting that during the July failed coup in Turkey, the Incirlik base power was cut, and US planes were not allowed to fly in or out of the base. As the coup was being suppressed, the base commander was arrested. Another source told EurActiv that US-Turkey relations have so deteriorated after the coup that Washington no longer trusted Ankara with the nuclear weapons, and so the warheads are being moved to the Deveselu air base in Romania.

Foreign Policy on Friday debunked the story, quoting a tweet from nuclear weapons expert Jeffrey Lewis, the director of non-proliferation studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, that said Romania does not have the special WS3 vaults needed to store the weapons safely. Also, the Romanian Defense Ministry released a statement saying “so far there have not been any plans or discussions on this topic.”

Of course, this entire brouhaha is borne by Erdogan’s obsession with his former ally and current enemy Fetullah Gulen, whose extradition from the US the Turks have been demanding since the failing of the coup (which Gulen’s supporters may or may not been responsible for). As long as the US insists on following the rule of law on the Gulen extradition, the Turks will persist in these shenanigans, until someone gets seriously hurt.

So far, as that Moscow parliamentarian has put it so aptly, one more victory for Putin.

JNi.Media

Turkey Blocks Access to NATO Airbase

Sunday, July 31st, 2016

The US airbase in the İncirlik quarter of the city of Adana, in southern Turkey, were closed by Turkish police Saturday, Hurriyet reported. The report followed images on twitter showing Turkish police sealing off the airbase. Incirlik is a critical American airbase, from which NATO forces launch airstrikes against ISIS. It also contains nuclear weapons.

According to RT, some 7,000 police armed with rifles in heavy armored TOMA vehicles surrounded the Incirlik air base, a move which a Turkish government minister called a “security check.”

David Israel

Netanyahu And NATO Representatives Commit To Mutual Cooperation, Fighting Terror Together

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

Jerusalem (TPS) – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with ambassadors from NATO countries earlier on Tuesday to discuss expanding cooperation between Israel and NATO against the common threat of global terrorism.

“There are so many threats that are facing NATO that are similar to the ones facing Israel,” said Danish Ambassador to Israel Jesper Vahr whose embassy is currently NATO’s contact point embassy in Israel.

During the press conference, Ambassador Vehr shared a message with Prime Minister Netanyahu on behalf of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg who said that Israel and NATO face common threats.

“Today our nations face greater, more complex threats than they have in many years,” Vehr said on behalf of Stoltenberg. “It is right that those countries that share common values of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law work together for the good of us all.”

Netanyahu concurred with Ambassador Vehr and Secretary General Stoltenberg and also expressed his belief in mutual cooperation between Israel and NATO.

“Israel has much to contribute to NATO. I believe NATO has much to contribute to Israel,” said the prime minister. “We’ve already begun that process, but I think we can extend and increase our cooperation.”

Although not a member of the NATO alliance, Israel has already played an integral role as a member of NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue, a working group between NATO and seven Mediterranean countries focused on maintaining security in the Mediterranean region.

“Israel for many years has been an active member of NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue, the only security forum that brings together NATO allies with Israel and Arab countries. Last month, NATO and Israel went further, agreeing to establish an Israeli mission at NATO,” Ambassador Vehr said. “Having a mission will help us to take our political and practical cooperation to a higher level.”

Official authorization for such an office had been delayed by Turkey, a NATO member that has had strained bilateral ties with Israel since 2010. Turkey’s eventual lifting of its rejection to an Israeli mission was viewed by some as a sign on Turkey’s part of reconciliation with Israel.

Prime Minister Netanyahu immediately welcomed the establishment of the office on May 4, referring to it as a critical step in the advancement of Israel’s security and as a demonstration of NATO’s desire to cooperate with Israel on security matters.

“We’re in the process of opening up the office as soon as possible,” remarked Netanyahu at the press conference. “We attach great importance to that.”

Netanyahu’s meeting today preceded an upcoming NATO summit in Warsaw scheduled for July 8-9, which NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg referred to last week as a “landmark summit” addressing “a changed security environment” around NATO.

Netanyahu assured NATO ambassadors that Israel is prepared to help the military alliance cope with global terrorism.

“In three weeks, you’re going to have an important summit in Warsaw and I believe the combat against global terrorism should be and probably is already a central part of your agenda,” Netanyahu told the NATO ambassadors. “Know that Israel stands ready to advance that agenda and I have no doubt that if we work together, we can roll back this terror.”

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Israel to Open Permanent Office at NATO Headquarters in Brussels

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced Israel will accept an invitation from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to open a permanent office at its Brussels headquarters in Belgium.

The invitation allegedly came after Turkey lifted a veto that blocked the upgrade five years ago. If true, it is another move that signals a warming of the ‘big chill’ between Ankara and Jerusalem since 2010.

“This is something we worked on for many years,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting.

“I think this is important to Israel’s standing in the world. The countries of the world want to cooperate with us because of our determined struggle against terrorism, because of our technological knowledge, our intelligence deployment and other reasons.”

Israel is currently a participant in the NATO Mediterranean Dialogue, together with Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Jordan, Mauritania and Morocco.

Hana Levi Julian

Libyan President Gaddafi Asked Israel for Help Against West

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016

According to a report by Israel’s Galei Tzahal raqdio, the late Libyan president/dictator Muammar Gaddafi turned to Israel via secret channel, asking for Israel’s help in getting the Western forces to stop attacking and trying to overthrow his regime.

Obviously it didn’t work.

Gaddafi was killed in 2011.

Libya has been in a civil war with itself and in battles with ISIS for the past 5 years. Over half a million Libyans have been left homeless as a result of the fighting.

Jewish Press News Briefs

U.S. Condemns Istanbul Attack, Cites 2 American Victims

Sunday, March 20th, 2016

The White House issued a statement Saturday night condemning the Istanbul terror attack that killed two dual American-Israeli citizens earlier in the day.

“The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms today’s terrorist attack in Istanbul, Turkey. Two American citizens were among those killed in this heinous attack,” National Security Council spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of those killed, and we wish a speedy recovery to those injured.”

A third Israeli and an Iranian citizen were both killed in the attack, along with the suicide bomber, Savaz Yildiz, 33, a resident of the Turkish city of Adana who was reportedly known to the authorities.

Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin said the explosion occurred outside a local government office on Istiklal Street, where numerous foreign consulates are located. The area is also dotted with many cafes and restaurants.

The U.S. State Department also condemned the attack in a statement released by spokesperson John Kirby.

“The United States strongly condemns the terrorist attack today on Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and our hopes for a quick recovery for those wounded,” the statement read.

“We will remain in close touch with Turkish authorities during the investigation. The United States stands in solidarity with our NATO Ally Turkey in combating the common threat of terrorism. This vicious attack is the latest in a series of indefensible violence targeting innocent people throughout Turkey – Turkish citizens and international visitors alike. These acts of terrorism only reinforce our determination to support all those across the region working to promote peace and reconciliation,” the statement said.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg condemned the attack in a written statement saying there can be no justification for terrorism. He said, “NATO allies stand united with Turkey, determined to fight against terrorism.”

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault also condemned the attack. “I strongly condemn this despicable and cowardly act that has caused the death of several people,” Ayrault said in a statement, adding Paris stands in solidarity with Turkey.

This past Wednesday Germany had closed its consulate and school in Istanbul due to credible security threats.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/u-s-condemns-istanbul-attack-cites-2-american-victims/2016/03/20/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: