Israel’s security cabinet now holds its meetings in an underground bunker
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Israel’s security cabinet now holds its meetings in an underground bunker

PM decides to transfer discussions to new secure Jerusalem site for foreseeable future, signaling heightened sensitivity of discussions

Illustrative: Prime Minister Benjamin (c), Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, (r) and IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkott, attending a security cabinet meeting at the Kirya, the IDF Headquarters, in Tel Aviv, on February 10, 2018. (Ariel Hermony/Ministry of Defense)
Illustrative: Prime Minister Benjamin (c), Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, (r) and IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkott, attending a security cabinet meeting at the Kirya, the IDF Headquarters, in Tel Aviv, on February 10, 2018. (Ariel Hermony/Ministry of Defense)

Israel’s high-level security cabinet is now holding its meetings in a new, specially built underground bunker in Jerusalem for the foreseeable future.

The change of venue — meetings of the security cabinet usually take place in the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem — may signal the heightened sensitivity of upcoming discussions, with some observers in the Hebrew-language media suggesting it could point to preparations for a possible escalation of hostilities with Iran.

Talks held in the secure bunker — known as the National Management Center — could also prevent leaks to the media.

The decision to move the meetings to the bunker was made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Two meetings of the 11-member forum have already been held there, and a third was scheduled for Wednesday, Army Radio said.

Following Israel’s recent military successes, including the Air Force’s strike on an Iranian base attack two weeks ago, the cabinet is reportedly formulating policy and deciding Israel’s red lines with regard to Iran and Syria.

During two pre-dawn hours on May 10, Israeli F-15 and F-16 fighter jets evaded “dozens of missiles” and dropped “many dozens” of bombs on over 50 Iranian targets throughout Syria as the Israel air force carried out an extensive campaign, dubbed “Operation House of Cards,” to debilitate Iran’s military presence in the country.

Those strikes came after 32 rockets were fired by Iranian troops in Syria at the Golan Heights, according to Israel Air Force figures, none of which struck Israeli territory.

At a meeting on the morning after the attack, the security cabinet discussed how best to proceed — whether to press its military advantage or settle for what had already been achieved, Hadashot news reported.

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