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First to use F-35 stealth fighter jets in combat: Israel

Prime News, International, Jerusalem, May 22:-  Israeli military has used its newly acquired F-35 stealth fighters in combat, making it the world’s first to do so, the air force commander said Tuesday.

“The Adir aircraft are already operational and flying combat missions,” Major General Amikam Norkin said at a conference in central Israel, using the plane’s Hebrew name.

“In fact, we have performed the first operational F-35 strike in the world.”

“We attacked twice in the Middle East using the F-35 – we are the first in the world to do so,” he said in remarks quoted by the air force’s website, without providing further details.

Israel has carried out a number of strikes in Syria against what it describes as Iranian targets as well as on what it says are advanced arms deliveries to Hezbollah.

The country has agreed to buy 50 of the American high-tech stealth bombers, which will help it maintain military superiority in the turbulent Middle East, particularly regarding anti-aircraft missile systems in Syria.

In December, the air force announced that the nine F-35 jets in its possession at the time were operational.

Norkin was speaking at an event marking the air force’s 70th anniversary in Herzliya, north of Tel Aviv, attended by senior air force officials from over 20 countries, the military said.

Israel has pledged to prevent its main enemy Iran from entrenching itself militarily in neighbouring Syria, where Tehran is backing President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.-(Inputs: Agencies, NGB)

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