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Israel deploys Iron Dome to counter Sinai threat

The deteriorating security situation in the so-called "wild south" in the Sinai desert region of Egypt has prompted Israel to deploy an Iron Dome rocket interceptor system near Eilat. This is the fifth such battery to have been deployed by the Israeli air force.

Egyptian authorities have been unable to counter the terror organisations that are now operating from the Sinai area, and Israeli sources say that some of the rockets that exploded in Israel earlier this month were launched from the region.

Iron Dome, a mobile defence system developed by Rafael, is intended to intercept short-range rockets and artillery shells that are judged to threaten civilians. During last year's conflict with militants in the Gaza Strip, the equipment intercepted more than 90% of the M-21 Grad and Kassam rockets that were fired into Israel.

The system's main components include a tracking radar, a battle management and weapons control unit and interceptor missiles, which can detonate incoming threats from ranges up to 37nm (70km).

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