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Israel conducted a test of a missile defense system and Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif responded by blaming Israel for testing “a nuke-missile aimed at Iran.”

The Israeli military conducted an unannounced missile test on Friday morning that was clearly visible from Tel Aviv. 

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

“The defense establishment conducted a launch test a few minutes ago of a rocket motor system from a base in the center of the country,” the Defense Ministry said. “The test was scheduled in advance and was carried out as planned.”

The test was reported in i24 News as an evaluation of a missile propulsion system for the defensive Arrow 3 (חץ Chetz) or attack missiles like the Jericho 3.  A similar experiment was conducted about a year and a half ago. 

The Arrow 3 is an exoatmospheric hypersonic anti-ballistic missile, jointly funded, developed and produced by Israel and the United States. With a range of 1,500 miles, The Arrow 3 was designed to intercept ballistic missiles during the space-flight portion of their trajectory, including intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) carrying nuclear, chemical, biological or conventional warheads. The main source of such a threat to Israel is believed to be Iran. According to the chairman of the Israeli Space Agency, Arrow 3 may serve as an anti-satellite weapon, which would make Israel one of the world’s few countries capable of shooting down satellites.

The Jericho 3 has a range of approximately 1,240 miles, meaning it could theoretically be used to attack Iran. The Jericho 3 is an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of being armed with a nuclear warhead.

Flights taking off and landing from nearby Ben Gurion International Airport had to be diverted away from the south side of the airport and residents of neighboring communities were alarmed as they have been targeted in recent months by missile attacks from Gaza. 

But the real effect of the test came from Iran, as witnessed by Zarif’s tweet.

A rather pointed reaction to Zarif came from a follower named Koohrang who put the blame on Sharif’s government, noting that the current Iranian regime was the real threat to the Iranian people.

Many of the comments on Zarif’s tweet indicated that there are far more detractors of the Iranian government than those who believe that Israel is a threat.

Iran was guilty of violating the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, known commonly as the Iran nuclear deal or Iran deal, that was put together by former President Barack Obama and signed in 2015 with five European nations. In addition, Iran was guilty of testing ICBMs in contravention of an agreement signed with the United Nations. Several of these missile tests were carried out with the words “Israel must be wiped out” written on the nose-cones.


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