Technical assistance and support from the U.S. Defense Department for an Israeli missile test over the Mediterranean Sea yesterday morning was unrelated to U.S. consideration of military action in Syria, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said.
“Early this morning, the United States Department of Defense provided technical assistance and support to the Israeli Missile Defense Organization flight test of a Sparrow target missile over the Mediterranean Sea,” Little said in a statement on September 3. “The test was long planned to help evaluate the Arrow Ballistic Missile Defense system’s ability to detect, track, and communicate information about a simulated threat to Israel.”
The United States and Israel cooperate on a number of long-term ballistic missile defense development projects to address common challenges in the region, the press secretary said.
“This test had nothing to do with United States consideration of military action to respond to Syria’s chemical weapons attack,” he added.
During the missile test, a “Sparrow” missile was launched from an Israeli warplane which was subsequently detected and shot down by an interceptor, Israel and the United States said in separate statements.
The Defense Ministry confirmed the firing of the medium-range guided missile after Russia’s radar had detected the launch.
Press Release, September 4, 2013