Azerbaijan purchased the Israeli Iron Dome missile system

Israel and Azerbaijan have “extensive ties,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the cabinet on Sunday, a day after Azerbaijan’s defense minister said his country had purchased the Iron Dome missile defense system from Israel. Last year, Israeli delegates travelled to Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, both Muslim countries with whom Israel has robust security and business ties.

On Saturday, the Azerbaijani Press Agency reported that Azerbaijan Defense Industry Minister Yaver Jamalov told reporters that the central Asian country agreed with Israel to purchase the anti-missile batteries.

Iron Dome missile system.

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, the company that developed the Iron Dome with Israel Aircraft Industries, had no comment on the sale. The system intercepts short-range rockets, and artillery shells fired from a distance of four to 70 kilometres if their trajectory takes them into populated areas.

Azerbaijan is believed to be one of the first countries to purchase the weapon. Over the years, reports from other countries – including South Korea, Singapore, and India – have expressed interest in the system, but those sales were never publicly confirmed. Azerbaijan’s interest in the system stems from Armenia’s recent purchase of Russian Iskander short-range ballistic missiles.

Azerbaijan and Armenia have conflicted for decades over the contested Nagorno-Karabakh territory, a conflict that flared up again in April.AdvertisementLast: After meeting with Netanyahu, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev revealed that his country had signed $5 billion worth of long-term contracts to buy weapons and security equipment from Israel over the years.

At the cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said that Israel imports about half its oil from Azerbaijan and is looking into hooking up to the country’s gas pipeline that supplies gas to Europe. Netanyahu said Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan “admire” Israel and want to strengthen their relationships with it.

He described his reception in Azerbaijan – which he visited once before briefly as prime minister in 1997 – as “extraordinary.”In addition, he said that Kazakhstan, which he described as “a gigantic country in central Asia, which has wide-ranging ties with Russia and China, and also with Iran,” wants to open its markets to Israeli investments and Israeli developments in agriculture, technology, industry, “and – of course – security.”.

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