Jericho Missile System:
An Israeli legislator’s recent calls for the use of a “doomsday” weapon against Hamas and Palestine have once again put the spotlight on nuclear weapons in West Asia, particularly the Jericho missile system.
- Jericho is Israel’s original ballistic missile programme, initiated in the 1960s and named after the biblical city located in the West Bank.
- This programme was initially a collaboration with the French aerospace company Dassault, but when France withdrew in 1969, Israel continued its development.
- Jericho-1 had a weight of 6.5 tonnes, a length of 13.4 metres, and a diameter of 0.8 metres and range of 500 kilometres and could carry a 1,000-kilogram payload, though it had a 50 percent chance of hitting within a 1,000-metre radius of its target.
- Jericho-2 was developed in the late 1980s, with a length of 15 metres and a diameter of 1.35 metres, while maintaining the same payload capacity and range between 1,500 and 3,500 kilometres.
- Jericho-3 is the first Israeli Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM).
- It was first tested in 2008 and entered service in 2011.
- It featured improvements over the previous models, with a longer length than Jericho-2 and a larger diameter of 1.56 metres.