First Published: 2012-11-14

 

Knocking on Iran’s door: US, Israel conclude major joint missile drill

 

Joint missile defence exercise sends clear signal to Iran over its disputed nuclear drive.

 

Middle East Online

JERUSALEM - Israeli and US troops have wrapped up a major missile defence exercise hailed as their largest-ever joint aerial military operation, the Israeli military said on Wednesday.

"Yesterday, US European Command and the Israel Defence Forces successfully concluded Austere Challenge 2012, a large-scale air defence exercise that included both field training and command post simulations," an army statement said.

The exercise involved some 3,500 personnel from the US European Command (US EUCOM) and 1,000 Israeli troops. It began in late October and was seen as sending a clear signal to Iran over its disputed nuclear drive, which much of the West believes masks a weapons drive despite Tehran's denial.

Troops trained together on Israel's Iron Dome missile defence system, the latest version of the US Patriot, and the Arrow anti-ballistic missile system, which was jointly developed by the two allies.

During the exercise, which lasted more than three weeks, violence between Israel and Gaza militants flared twice, with groups in the Palestinian territory firing hundreds of rockets into the Jewish state, some of which were intercepted by the Iron Dome system.

The exercise was expected to cost around $38 million (30 million euros), with Washington covering more than three-quarters of the total cost.

 

Turkey denies truce with Kurdish forces in northern Syria

Who killed ISIS top strategist: US Predator drone or Russian Su-34?

UN envoy to Security Council: Return to ceasefire 'critical' for Yemen

Italy rescues some 6,500 migrants off Libya

Fight against sexual harassment in Egypt bearing fruit

Iran arrests dual national for ‘acting against national security’

Kurdish activists call Turkey hunger strike over fate of Ocalan

US ‘horrified’ at South Sudan child soldier recruitment reports

Coalition raids kill 16 in Yemen: rebels

Fatal road accident leaves Tunisia in shock

One year after Merkel migrant offer, EU remains deeply divided

Israel police chief criticised for comments on minorities

Bomb kills woman in eastern Lebanon

Israel okays 466 settlement homes in occupied West Bank

Russia claims killing of ISIS top strategist in Syria

Turkey does 'not accept' truce with Syria Kurds

Retired Iran general killed in northern Syria

Two jihadists killed in Tunisia nighttime raid

Migrants race to Libya before end of summer

Iran urges Turkey to end Syria intervention

IS spokesman killed in Syria's Aleppo

Turkey, Syria Kurds reach agreement to stop fighting

Sweden jails Syrian refugee for setting fire to hostel

Turkey arrests editor from top daily in post-coup crackdown

Qaeda-linked group claims deadly ambush in Western Tunisia

France criticizes Turkey’s intervention in Syria

Turkey risks getting bogged down in Syria's war

Shabaab suicide car bomb targets Somalia hotel

US drone strike kills Qaeda suspect in Yemen

Qatar-Turkey relations continue to build upon strong alliance

Libya says last chemical weapons stocks shipped out

World Vision calls for transparent trial in 'Hamas aid' case

UN aid going to Assad-linked companies

Iran to cover infertility treatments

Top UN official calls for response to South Sudan refugee crisis

Obama to meet Erdogan on Syria over weekend

Libyan forces corner IS fighters in last Sirte holdouts

Tunisia's new unity government takes office

3 Saudi children killed in Yemen cross-border shelling

18 killed in suicide attack in Iraq oasis town

60 killed in suicide bomb attack on Yemen army camp

Turkey's bombings kill civilians in northern Syria

Iran arrests 'nuclear spy'

Egypt frees renowned rights lawyer, Malek Adly

In Saudi city of Najran, Huthis commit war crimes with indiscriminate rockets