ATHENS ø Several Israeli firms have been contracted to provide a
range of security services to the Olympic Games later this month.
Industry sources said some of the Israeli firms have been hired to
provide security consulting for the Olympic Games, scheduled to begin on
Aug. 13. Other firms have been contracted to provide security systems or
protect delegations, Middle East Newsline reported.
An Israeli company, Etna, owned by former Mossad director Shabtai
Shavit, who headed Israel's spy agency from 1989 to 1996, was awarded a
contract to protect the NBC television presence at the Olympic Games. This
security consulting and providing guards to protect NBC facilities and
"This is one of the biggest contracts won by an Israeli firm," the
industry source said. "NBC has invested a huge amount of money and is
very aware of the terrorist threat."
[On Sunday, NATO imposed restrictions around Athens as Olympic
delegations arrived in the Greek capital. Greece has deployed PAC-3
missiles, airborne early-warning systems and 70,000 troops in the $1.2
billion security effort.]
Israel has been a member of a seven-nation security advisory committee
on the Olympic Games. Former Israeli security chiefs have been selected to
head many of the firms that competed for Olympic contracts.
Israel's Controp has sold its Cedar-M electro-optical observation system
to help ensure security at the Olympic Games. The Cedar-M was said to
provide day and night protection to Greek ports and harbors.
"The Israelis aren't the first in security at the Olympics, but they're
clearly in the top four," an industry source said.
Greek officials said Israeli security guards would be allowed to wield
firearms under strict limitations. The United States was also given
permission to bring armed guards.