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Israel completes tests of upgraded Iron Dome air defence system



Jerusalem, Jan 13 (IANS) Israel has "successfully" concluded a series of tests of an upgraded Iron Dome air defence system, according to the government.

Taking to Twitter on Sunday, the Defence Ministry said that it has completed "a complex test campaign" of an advanced version of the Iron Dome system, reports Xinhua news agency.

The tests were conducted by the Israel Missile Defense Organization, a department of the Defence Ministry, and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., a government-owned weapons company.

"The system tested is an upgraded and improved version of the Iron Dome," Moshe Patael, chief of the Israel Missile Defense Organization, said.

Patael said that once the upgraded system was delivered to the military, it "will enable the Air Force to confront expected threats in the region in a much better way".

Rafael’s Executive Vice President and Head of Air and Missile Defence Division, Pini Yungman, said the "system intercepted all threats simulated during the tests".

The Defence Ministry said the completion of the tests marked "an important milestone in Israel’s operational ability to defend itself of current and future regional threats".

It added that the new tests was conducted 10 years after the system was first tested.

Israel uses the Iron Dome mainly to intercept short-range rockets fired from the Gaza Strip during escalations with the Palestinians.

According to figures released by the Defence Ministry, the system has operated about 2,400 successful interceptions since it first became operational in 2011.

Iron Dome is part of Israel’s multi-layer defence doctrine, which includes also David’s Sling, a medium to long-range missiles defence system, and the long-range Arrow-3 and Arrow-2 systems.


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