Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) responded in the Finance Committee to the revelation that some of funds spent on the new submarine deal with Germany will end up in the hands of Iran.
The German company, ThyssenKrupp, is the contractor both for the submarines and for the “Saar-6” warships currently under construction. According to recent reports, the Iranian government owns 4.5% of the company, from which it has earned over $2 billion in dividends.
“The issue of Iran’s share in the submarine’s manufacturer has been known since long before I took office,” said Liberman.
According to Liberman, “The issue was already known and discussed in the cabinet and in the National Security Council and the reality is quite a bit different than the way it’s been portrayed in the media. There was no alternative for the State of Israel. The company is run by its board and management, and Iran’s share is negligible.”
Liberman appeared before the Finance Committee for the presentation of the defense budget for the years 2017-2018. The budget will be the biggest ever, amounting to $18.6 billion in 2017 and $18.5 billion in 2018, not including the aid package from the United States.