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Israel Declares Sea-Based Iron Dome Operational (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

© Flickr / Israel Defense ForcesIron Dome system intercepts Gaza rockets aimed at central Israel
Iron Dome system intercepts Gaza rockets aimed at central Israel - Sputnik International
The Israel Defense Force’s vessel-mounted Iron Dome missile defense system formally became operational on Monday, a spokesman for the military said, after reportedly intercepting rockets very successfully during test trials.

The final test of the missile shield featured test rockets fired individually and in large bursts at Israeli ships and offshore oil infrastructure.

​Iron Dome was originally designed as a land-based system to protect Israeli population centers from short-range rockets and missiles. The sea version of Iron Dome incorporates a naval radar synchronized with detection systems in mainland Israel.

​"The system has shot down more than 1,700 weapons since 2011," the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) said Wednesday on Twitter.

​"Now, the life-saving technology will protect Israel at sea," AIPAC said, emphasizing that the Israeli military had made a "major breakthrough."

"Today, the IAF put another operational layer to defend and protect Israel's energy assets in the Mediterranean Sea," Israel Air Force Brig. Gen. Zvika Haimovitch said Monday.

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