Israel says tanks to get new anti-missile system

Israel Materials 7 August 2009 23:39 (UTC +04:00)

The Israeli army will begin equipping its tanks with a new anti-missile system, following stinging losses due to missiles fired by Hezbollah militants in the 2006 Lebanon war, officials said, according to AFP.

The Trophy system uses radar to track incoming missiles and fires a projectile to explode the missiles before they reach their target, a military official said.

Tests of the system were successful and it will be installed on the latest generation Merkava IV tanks.

According the private television station Channel 10 the system is expensive, costing around 350,000 dollars (245,000 euros) per unit.

Israel has been searching for a new defence against missiles after Hezbollah militants during the Second Lebanon War scored a number of damaging strikes against the Merkavas, considered one of the strongest tanks in the world.

Israel media have reported that of 25 modern guided missiles fired by Hezbollah militants, a quarter penetrated the tank's formidable armour and caused death or injuries among crew members.