Israeli minister says Russian weapons arming 'terrorists'


AFP
Date: 08-08-06

MOSCOW (AFP) - Israeli Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter has said in an interview that "all the terrorists surrounding Israel" are using Russian weapons.

"All the terrorists surrounding Israel are using Russian- and Soviet-made arms: Kalashnikov assault rifles and Katyusha rockets," Dichter told the Russian daily Vremya Novostei in an interview published Tuesday.

"We don't have information about direct contacts between Hezbollah combatants and Russia, but we know quite well about Hezbollah's direct contacts with Syria and Iran," Dichter said.

Russian sales of anti-aircraft missiles to Syria and Iran have been heavily criticised by the United States and Israel.

Last week, the US government imposed sanctions on Russian jetmaker Sukhoi and arms export monopoly Rosoboronexport, citing their weapons sales to Iran.

President Vladimir Putin defended the sale of anti-aircraft missiles to Syria in 2004, saying they posed no threat to Israel.



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