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Business News/ Companies / People/  Elon Musk meets Israeli minister, agrees to provide Starlink services in Gaza, but …

Elon Musk meets Israeli minister, agrees to provide Starlink services in Gaza, but …

SpaceX's Starlink will provide high-speed internet access to Israel and Gaza Strip with approval from Israel's Communications Ministry. The understanding between Elon Musk and Israel's Communications Minister is seen as important for a better world free of anti-Semitism.

 Tesla and SpaceX's CEO Elon Musk (REUTERS)Premium
Tesla and SpaceX's CEO Elon Musk (REUTERS)

Elon Musk reportedly visited Israel on Monday amid the on going war with Hamas fighters from Palestine's Gaza. On Monday, Israel said that it had reached an agreement in principle for using his SpaceX company's Starlink communications in the Gaza Strip. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also due to meet Musk on Monday to discuss the security aspects of artificial intelligence and hold a live online discussion, Netanyahu's office said.

The Communications Minister of Israel, Shlomo Karhi, posted on its twitter handle on Monday that Starlink satellite units will only be able to operate in Israel and the Gaza Strip following the Communications Ministry's approval.

The Communications Minister of Israel called the understanding between him and Musk “vital" as it is for everyone who desires a “better world, free of evil and free of anti-Semitism, for our children's sake".

A project by SpaceX, the satellite internet provides high-speed internet access to anywhere on the Earth using a constellation of thousands of satellites. The internet services this case rely on the constellation of LEO (Low-Earth Orbit) Starlink satellites operated by SpaceX.

Unlike the traditional internet that relies on cables or copper wires, the satellite internet uses signals from satellites orbiting the Earth.

Earlier, Elon Musk had said in October that SpaceX's Starlink will support communication links in Gaza with "internationally recognized aid organizations". Musk’s move prompted Israel's communication minister to say Israel would fight the move.

Responding to Elon Musk's post on X, Israel's communication minister Shlomo Karhi had then said Israel "will use all means at its disposal to fight this."

"HAMAS will use it for terrorist activities," Karhi wrote. "Perhaps Elon Musk would be willing to condition it with the release of our abducted babies, sons, daughters, elderly people. All of them! By then, my office will cut any ties with Starlink."

A telephone and internet blackout isolated people in the Gaza Strip from the world and from each other on October 28, with calls to loved ones, ambulances or colleagues elsewhere all but impossible as Israel widened its air and ground assault.

Elon Musk had defended himself from what he labeled “bogus media stories" after he endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory earlier this month on X, which drew condemnation from the White House and led many major brands to pause advertising on the platform. Critics have accused the service, formerly known as Twitter, of amplifying anti-Jewish hatred.

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Published: 27 Nov 2023, 04:39 PM IST
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