Israel’s defence ministry announced on Sunday that it had successfully tested its “Arrow 3” defensive missiles that can shoot high-level ballistic missiles out of the sky.

Moving at extremely high speeds, the interceptor physically hits the target in space before the warhead splits off, thereby limiting any damage it can cause to Israel, including radioactive contamination.

Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “In recent weeks we have carried out three pioneering secret experiments of the Arrow 3 missile. These experiments were held in the US, in Alaska, in full cooperation with our great ally the US.

“They were successful beyond any imagination. The Arrow 3 – with complete success – intercepted ballistic missiles beyond the atmosphere at unprecedented altitudes and speeds. The execution was perfect – all precise hits.

PM Netanyahu's remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following the remarks today, at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting: (English captions available): "In recent weeks we have carried out three pioneering secret experiments of the Arrow 3 missile. These experiments were held in the US, in Alaska, in full cooperation with our great ally the US. They were successful beyond any imagination. The Arrow 3 – with complete success – intercepted ballistic missiles beyond the atmosphere at unprecedented altitudes and speeds. The execution was perfect – all precise hits. 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. All of our enemies should know that we will overcome them in both defense and offense." The Prime Minister added:"I would like to make it clear here that metal hit metal; it was not just a proximity detonation. The missile hit the missile all three times. This is a great achievement. First of all, I would like to thank – of course – the US Ambassador to Israel and, through you, the US administration as well. I would like to express deep and strong appreciation for advancing our joint security. I would like to thank the Defense Ministry, the IDF, IAI and our ambassador, Ron Dermer, who was in Alaska for this. I want to thank all of the engineers and developers who brought about this breakthrough, this leap forward, which is considerable for the security of Israel with very great significance, especially at this time." US Ambassador David Friedman:"On behalf of President Trump and the Trump administration, I just would like to tell you how delighted we were with the successful results of the test of the Arrow 3 missile system, a critical element of Israel's missile defense. The results were extraordinary. We're very proud of our partnership with the State of Israel, the funding that we provided for this, the technical expertise that we added, obviously making our airspace available for this test over Alaska. This is an extraordinary and an unprecedented example of the cooperation between our two great countries and from here may we continue to go upward and onward in making the world a safer place." Defense Ministry Directorate of Defense Research and Development head Dr. Danny Gold:"Like the Prime Minister said, this is an unprecedented operation. This is a technological, operational and logistical breakthrough. At the forefront of technological and operational knowledge, we had three interceptions in a row, in space, at very high altitudes and at a very great distance, of long-range ballistic missiles. This symbolizes the coherent and unprecedented cooperation with the US. We worked as one team with the US Missile Defense Agency. We sat together at one location 24/7 for a long time. All of this was under the leadership of the Defense Ministry Israel Missile Defense Organization headed by Moshe Patel, the security industries, IAI, Elbit-Elisra and RAFAEL, which worked together as a single team, of people aged 20-78, 24/7 continuously, and other agencies in support."Video: Omer Miron, GPOSound: Ben Peretz, GPO

Posted by The Prime Minister of Israel on Sunday, 28 July 2019

“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.

“All of our enemies should know that we will overcome them in both defense and offense.”

The Prime Minister added: “I would like to make it clear here that metal hit metal; it was not just a proximity detonation. The missile hit the missile all three times. This is a great achievement.”

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The Jerusalem Post reports:

The success of recent Arrow 3 tests conducted jointly by Israel and the United States in Alaska is extremely important, and sends an unequivocal message to Iran and its proxies.

As The Jerusalem Post’s diplomatic correspondent Herb Keinon reported, Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer made a top-secret trip to Alaska to be part of the historic event, the first time the missile defense system has been tested outside of Israel.

The Defense Ministry announced on Sunday that the Arrow 3 successfully demonstrated interceptions of ballistic targets in space as well as intercepted multiple targets. It added that the operation took place in the most northern US state in order to test capabilities that cannot be tested in Israel.

The tests were held at the Pacific Spaceport Complex-Alaska in Kodiak by the Defense Ministry’s Missile Defense Organization (MDO) and the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA), together with the Israel Air Force and Israel Aerospace Industries, which manufactures the Arrow 3.

“The fact that the tests were conducted in Alaska, tens of thousands of kilometers away from Israel, is another significant achievement that demonstrates the operational capabilities of the Arrow 3 system to successfully face any threat,” said MDO Director Moshe Patel.

“This unique success in Alaska provides confidence in future Israeli capabilities to defeat the developing threats in the region. My congratulations to the Israel Missile Defense Organization, our MDA team, and our industry partners,” said MDA Director V.-Adm. Jon Hill. “We are committed to assisting the government of Israel in upgrading its national missile defense capability to defend the State of Israel from emerging threats.”

We join Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is also defense minister, in lauding the secret tests conducted over the past few weeks “in full cooperation with our great ally, the US.”

It should be noted that Israel’s announcement of the Arrow 3 tests came just days after US officials revealed that Iran had test fired a Shahab-3 medium-range ballistic missile on July 24, adding to already high tensions between Washington and Tehran.
One official said the missile flew nearly 1,000 kilometers from the southern part of the country northward to an area near the capital, Tehran.

In the past, the US and its allies have asserted that Shahab-3 launches violate the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement.

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