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Israel army urges probe over leak of info on Iran dealings

Only a few senior Israeli officials reportedly had knowledge about a secret fund linked to an ongoing Israel-Iran legal dispute
A letter obtained by Channel 2 suggests that high ranking officials may have leaked information to Haaretz (Wikicommons)

The Israeli army has urged the country's top prosecutor to open an investigation into the leakage of sensitive information on Israel's secret dealings with the Iranian government, local media has reported.

The army's chief military censor Brigadier General Sima Vaknin-Gil called for the investigation after high-ranking security officials allegedly leaked the information to the Haaretz newspaper, The Times of Israel and Channel 2 reported.

In a letter obtained by Channel 2, Vaknin-Gil revealed that a Haaretz article, which provided details about an ongoing legal dispute between Israel and Iran over arbitration involving a joint oil pipeline project, dating back to before Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, had caused "serious harm" to Israeli national security.

One of the sensitive points revealed by the report was the opening of a secret Israeli fund in case the Israeli side is forced to pay compensation to Iran.

Only a few senior officials had the knowledge about the secret fund, prompting Vaknin-Gil to believe that the leaks came from high-ranking officials, the reports said.

The arbitration involved a joint Israeli-Iranian venture that was established in 1968 to carry Asian oil from Eilat to Europe.

Following the Islamic Revolution, the Iranian side was cut out of the deal, leaving the company to Israeli management. Yet Iran has repeatedly demanded that Israel should pay back debts that were left unpaid when the arrangement was still on.

The two sides took the case to international arbitration. A Swiss arbitration panel last year ruled that Israel should pay Iran for the loss of its stake in the pipeline.