Intelligence Sharing with Egypt, Jordan Helps Combat Islamic State

YERUSHALAYIM -

Despite uneasiness in relations between Israel and its neighbors Egypt and Jordan, the threat of Islamic State is powerful enough to warrant intelligence sharing between them, a senior Israeli military officer revealed on Wednesday.

Israel provides its neighbors with intelligence assistance to help them beat back the terrorist challenge, Major-General Yair Golan, deputy commander of the Israeli armed forces, said in a briefing for the Foreign Press Association in Yerushalayim reported on by The Jerusalem Post.

“Egypt fights the Islamic State in the Sinai peninsula. Jordan is terrified by the presence of the Islamic State in Jordan’s cities and towns. And we try to work with them in order to contribute something to their security,” he said.

Although he termed the intelligence cooperation as unprecedented, Golan added: “I wouldn’t describe that as some sort of reconciliation between the people. But it is a good starting point and I’m quite optimistic concerning that.”

Egypt signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, followed by Jordan in 1994. They are the only Arab countries to have done so, a fact that remains broadly unpopular in both countries. But cooperation goes on, mostly quietly and behind the scenes.