The Israeli defence ministry is accusing some Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) European partners of creating a negative atmosphere that has prevented Israel from joining the programme.

Israel has been negotiating to join the programme for two years, seeking to enlist as a Level 3 partner earlier this year.

Kuti Mor, Israeli defence ministry deputy director general policy and planning, says some European partners are against Israel joining the systems development and demonstration phase. "These countries are concerned that Israel will have too much influence on the final configuration."

He adds that the $150 million needed to become a partner will be available when issues are resolved. "We still hope to join in time to influence the aircraft's design," he says. Mor says that a "formula" will soon be found to enable Israel to join. "We are beyond the official deadline, but this will not be a problem," he adds.

Source: Flight International