Israelis take cover in national defense drill


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israelis took part in an annual nationwide drill preparing them for conventional or chemical rocket attacks.

Sirens that sounded throughout the country Monday sent Israelis to protected areas and bomb shelters in the Home Front Command drill.

The exercise, which will end Wednesday, was to include a second siren on Monday evening.

The Israeli military said it will focus on preparing Israelis for the use of unconventional weapons.

Along with the army’s Home Front Command, the exercise includes the Home Front Defense Ministry, the National Emergency Authority, municipalities and local authorities, government offices, defense and rescue organizations, the national school system, and other public and private bodies.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, announcing the drill Sunday at the weekly Cabinet meeting, said threats against the Israeli home front have significantly increased in recent years.

“Israel is the most threatened state in the world; it is under missile and rocket threat,” he said. “We are prepared for any scenario.”


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