Recent satellite imagery indicates that the United Arab Emirates has deployed an Israeli-made air defense battery, according to geopolitical and market intelligence firm Tactical Report.

The Israel Aerospace Industries Barak battery, together with a radar system made by IAI subsidiary Elta, were deployed at Al-Dhafra air base, south of Abu Dhabi, according to the report.

The Barak family of air defense systems are designed to protect against long-, medium- and short-range missile threats, and also against unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

Breaking Defense reported on October 19 that a version of Barak had been deployed to the UAE, adding that further orders were likely.

The report cited a defense source as stating that the UAE requires several systems to protect sensitive sites, which have been struck by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen.

In September, Reuters reported that the UAE had ordered the advanced Spyder air defense system from Israeli defense company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.

The Houthis claimed responsibility for a January 17 UAV and missile attack on Abu Dhabi that killed three people at a facility run by the ANDOC state oil company. Subsequent attacks followed, including one in February claimed by an Iran-backed Iraqi Shi’ite militia.

The UAE is in possession of U.S.-made THAAD and Patriot PAC-3 missile defense systems, though these are reportedly not the ideal solutions for dealing with smaller threats like UAVs.


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