Israeli Company Magal Pushes for Mexico Wall Deal as Netanyahu Endorses Idea


An Israeli security company is making a push to help build Donald Trump’s Mexico border wall, after the U.S. president praised Israel’s success in boosting security by fencing off its frontiers.

Shares of Yehud, Israel-based Magal Security Systems Ltd. jumped 5.6 percent on Jan. 27, the day after Trump told Fox News a security barrier could almost completely stop border breaches. The company’s shares have risen nearly 50 percent since Trump’s election.

Executives from Magal’s U.S.-based Senstar unit will be showing off its FiberPatrol product at a border security summit in Alexandria, Virginia, where officials from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other agencies will be present, according to Magal Chief Executive Officer Saar Koursh. The system, which embeds fiber-optic sensors in long stretches of fences and walls, is already used for perimeter security at airports and seaports around the world, he said.

“We have the right product and we have the experience in Israel that helps in showcasing our product,” Koursh said in a telephone interview Jan. 26.

Magal was a major contractor on Israel’s West Bank barrier, a stretch of sensor-laden fences and concrete walls that was begun in 2002 to counter a wave of Palestinian suicide-bombings. The company has also helped build a fence along Israel’s border with Egypt, which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented on Saturday as an example for Trump’s Mexico wall.

“President Trump is right,” Netanyahu said on Twitter. “I built a wall along Israel’s southern border. It stopped all illegal immigration. Great success. Great idea.”

That intervention prompted a statement of “profound surprise, rejection and disappointment” from Mexico’s Foreign Ministry.

Netanyahu was referring to Israel’s “specific security experience which we are willing to share,” Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said later on Twitter. “We do not express a position on U.S.-Mexico relations.”

In the interview with Fox News, Trump said a wall would be effective in preventing illegal immigration from Mexico.

“All you have to do is ask Israel,” he said. “They were having a total disaster coming across, and they had a wall. It’s 99.9 percent stoppage.”

(c) 2017, Bloomberg · Jonathan Ferziger 



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here