JERUSALEM 

Israel has successfully launched a new spy satellite into the space, according to the Defense Ministry on Monday.

“Ofek 16 satellite was launched at 04:00am from central Israel into space and shortly after that, the satellite started transmitting data and beginning to orbit around the Earth,” the ministry said in a statement.

According to Israeli officials, the newly launched military satellite will be used to monitor distant threats.

“The new satellite would serve as one of the main sources to monitor threats facing the State of Israel,” Amnon Harari, the head of the Space and Satellite Administration in the Defense Ministry, said.

According to Harari, Ofek 16 will be used to monitor threats against Israel, which are sometimes far away and immediate.

“Iran is investing a lot into building its space power and program,” Harari said. “It is a threat that we have to monitor.”

Israel Defense Minister Benny Gantz hailed the successful launch, saying it is “another achievement for the defense establishment”.

“Israel’s superiority in technology is essential for the security of Israeli,” he said.

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