'Israeli technology could help fight terror attacks'


The UK needs Israeli technology to combat terrorism, a senior figure at the Israeli Economy Ministry has claimed.

Ziva Eger, chief executive of the foreign investments and industrial cooperation division at the Ministry, said that Israel's experience in fighting extremists with specialist cyber and homeland security technologies was needed in places like London, Paris and Brussels.

She said: "Of course Israeli technology could help fight the terror attacks that are happening across Europe.

"A lot of terror attacks have been avoided in Israel because of our intelligence cyber and homeland security technologies. Most of our technology is in the defence area – we needed it years ago.

"Unfortunately, the public and private sectors in Europe have now started to realise that they need such technology too."

Pointing to the financial, cyber and medical technology sectors, she called for more bilateral ties, adding: "We have so much in common; we complete each other. The UK has global access and Israel has cutting-edge technology."

She said these bilateral ties would hold, regardless of the political leadership of the UK, and made particular reference to a Labour government led by Jeremy Corbyn: "I think business and innovation goes beyond politics. Any leader, so matter how radical, can't stop that. He won't boycott Israel as a matter of policy, because it won't make any sense."

The sentiment was echoed by the Israeli Embassy's head of economic and trade mission Nathan Tsror, who said: "We know the UK. We don't relate to a ruling party."

In the meantime, speaking at a a central London conference set to promote UK-Israel business ties, UK Trade Minister Lord Maude said bilateral relations were stronger than ever.

Speaking at the day-long Power of Innovation London Conference on Tuesday, he told more than 200 guests at the InterContinental Park Lane Hotel: "We see Israel as a natural partner in driving innovation to ensure growth for our mutual benefit.

"There is already a very strong partnership."

He added: "We work very closely and there is a lesson in that: that our two countries are centres of digital innovation, among other areas.

"Just as we work together to drive digital transformation, so are we, in Britain and Israel, natural partners in driving economic growth.

"I have been an admirer for a long time of Israel's culture of innovation. Truly it is the start-up nation and I have seen first-hand, the ground-breaking work being carried out."

The conference – which focused on the technology and the benefits of partnerships between the public and private sectors - was run by Israel's Economy Ministry and the country's Economic and Trade Mission.

Speakers included former Israeli ambassador Matthew Gould – who now sits as the Cabinet Office's director of cyber security; businessman Sir Ronald Cohen and Amit Lang, the Israeli Economy Ministry's director general.

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