Israel test-launches upgraded 'Arrow 3' missile interceptor

JERUSALEM: Israel's upgraded Arrow ballistic missile shield passed a full interception test on Thursday, hitting a target in space meant to simulate the trajectory of the long-range weapons held by Iran, Syria and Hezbollah, the Defence Ministry said.

The Defense Ministry said it “conducted a successful first engagement of a ballistic missile target with the Arrow-3 interceptor.” It called Thursday's test, which was carried out with the US Missile Agency, a “major milestone” in the development of the system.

The success was a boost for "Arrow 3", among Israeli missile defence systems that gets extensive US funding and whose first attempt at a full trial, held a year ago, was aborted due to what designers said was a faulty deployment of the target.

Arrow 3 is part of the multi-layered system Israel is developing to protect itself against a range of threats – from short-range rockets fired from the Gaza Strip and Lebanon to Iran's long-range missiles.

Arrow 3 is designed to strike targets outside the atmosphere, intercepting missiles closer to their launch sites.

It is being developed by Israel Aerospace Industries together with U.S. aviation giant Boeing Co.

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