BEIRUT

Middle East

After drone, Israel deploys missile defense unit

A still image taken from Israeli army video footage shows what they say is a small unidentified aircraft shot down in a mid-air interception after it crossed into southern Israel October 6, 2012. REUTERS/IDF via Reuters TV.

JERUSALEM: Israel's military has deployed a missile defense system near the Lebanese border, days after warplanes shot down a mysterious unmanned aircraft that entered its skies.

An army spokesman said on Tuesday that the Patriot missile defense battery was deployed in the northern city of Haifa. He refused to say if the battery's deployment was connected to Saturday's drone incident. The drone is widely believed to have originated in Lebanon.

He spoke anonymously in line with military regulations.

The military has not said where the drone originated or who produced it. But it appears to be the work of Lebanon's militant group Hezbollah, which possesses advanced Iranian weapons and has deployed similar aircraft in the past.

Israel deployed Patriots in Haifa during its 2006 war with Hezbollah and on other occasions.

 

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