Israel moves closer to adding long distance missile interception system


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel and the United States announced jointly conducted successful tests of the Arrow-3 advanced missile defense system over Alaska.

That means Arrow-3, which protects against long range missiles, should join Israel’s other defense systems, which include the Iron Dome (designed to intercept medium range missiles), David’s Sling (for medium to long range rockets) and Arrow-2 (for short and medium range attacks).

“They were successful beyond any imagination. The Arrow 3 – with complete success – intercepted ballistic missiles beyond the atmosphere at unprecedented altitudes and speeds,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Sunday about the tests. “Today Israel has the ability to act against ballistic missiles that could be launched against us from Iran or anywhere else. This is a great achievement for the security of Israel.”

The successful test comes days after the United States said that Iran has tested a medium-range ballistic missile that could potentially reach Israel, though Tehran countered that it was testing the missile for defensive purposes and not to target another country.

“These successful tests mark a major milestone in the development of the Arrow Weapon System,” Vice Admiral Jon Hill, director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, said in a statement. “This unique success in Alaska provides confidence in future Israeli capabilities to defeat the developing threats in the region.”

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