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US Finalizes Deal to Purchase 2 Iron Dome Systems from Israel

US Finalizes Deal to Purchase 2 Iron Dome Systems from Israel

Wednesday, 14 August, 2019 - 07:00
Iron Dome anti-missile system fires interception missiles as rockets are launched from Gaza towards Israel as seen from the city of Ashkelon, Israel October 27, 2018. (Reuters)
Ramallah – Asharq Al-Awsat

The US Department of Defense has finalized its contract to purchase to Iron Dome batteries from Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd, an Israeli defense technology company.

Deal talks have been run for weeks and included negotiations on transferring the systems over to the US.

In February, the Pentagon informed the Israeli Ministry of Defense that Washington was interested in procuring two Iron Dome systems for the US Army’s interim cruise missile defenses.

The purchase comes as part of the Army’s Indirect Fires Protection Capability (IFPC) program—under development to defend against rockets, artillery and mortars as well as unmanned aircraft and cruise missiles — and fills its urgent capability gap for cruise missile defenses on an interim basis.

As reported by Defense News, the deputy director of the Army's air and missile defense cross-functional team, Daryl Youngman, said that inking the contract will pave the way to scheduling the delivery of the systems.

Iron Dome missile systems are capable of intercepting short-range missiles, small drones and some mortars, such as those fired from the Gaza Strip or southern Lebanon.

It intercepts a set of targets regardless of surrounding climatic conditions. The missile systems’ interception capabilities are merited by its launching of missiles towards marked targets but without striking them directly. Fired missiles explode at great proximity to target objects.

The two Iron Dome batteries the US Army will buy consist of 12 launchers, two radars, two battlement management centers and 240 interceptors.

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