Israeli leader says Australia ties strong

Associated Press

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's premier is denying that the man known as "Prisoner X" worked for Australia's security service and says relations between the countries remains strong. The comments follow a saga that has tested ties between the allies.

Benjamin Netanyahu's office said Tuesday that there was "excellent cooperation, full coordination and complete transparency" between the two countries.

Israel loosened of a gag order over Israel's investigation into the death of an Australian-Israeli man in an Israeli prison two years ago. The probe ruled that the man known hung himself.

Australia's national broadcaster has identified the man as Ben Zygier, saying he worked for Israel's Mossad spy agency.

Israel kept the case under wraps for more than two years, finally acknowledging it last week only 24 hours after Australian TV broke the story.

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