Israel 'rehearsed for attack on Iran'

Israel refused to confirm or deny a report today that its warplanes staged a major rehearsal for an attack on Iran.

The New York Times quoted US officials as saying more than 100 Israeli jets staged the manoeuvre over the eastern Mediterranean earlier this month.

It said the aircraft flew more than 900 miles, roughly the distance from Israel to Iran’s Natanz nuclear enrichment facility.

Israel’s military issued a statement saying only that its air force “regularly trains for various missions in order to confront and meet the challenges posed by the threats facing Israel”.

Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert has said he would prefer Iran’s nuclear ambitions to be halted through diplomacy, but he would not rule out military action.

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