Israeli air force to conduct large drill

Jan. 2, 2013 at 6:44 AM

JERUSALEM, Jan. 2 (UPI) -- More than 100 fighter jets from different countries will participate in an air force drill in Israel for the first time, Israeli air force officials said.

Fighter jets from a number of foreign militaries are to arrive in Israel in the coming months to take part in the exercise dubbed "Blue Plug," Israel's Channel 2 television reported Tuesday. The countries participating in the drill remain classified.

During the exercise, described as the largest air exercise to be conducted in Israel, fighter jets will conduct air battles and attacks, conduct low altitude flights and drop ammunition.

"We do not rely on other armies but I believe, if we require cooperation, the exercise can only aid us in creating a common language with the rest of the world," an Israeli air force major, who is deputy head of the Red Squadron who will imitate the air force of neighboring Arab countries during the exercise, told the television station.

In recent years Israeli air force squadrons have taken part in exercises in Italy, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus and Greece, as well as the Middle East and Balkan skies, the report said.

"Dozens of planes from different country will fly here ... it will be one of the most qualitative exercises for air forces in the world," said another Israeli officer who is one of the supervisors of the exercise.

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