Israel signs $200 million deal to sell UAVs to Asian country

Package includes the latest version of the Heron, in fourth major deal this year for Israel Aerospace Industries drone equipment

An Israeli Heron military drone flies over the southern Israeli city of Ashdod on November 13, 2019. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)
An Israeli Heron military drone flies over the southern Israeli city of Ashdod on November 13, 2019. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)

The Israel Aerospace Industry said Tuesday it has signed a $200 million deal to supply drone technology and services to an unspecified Asian country.

The deal is for the sale of the IAI’s Heron drone, including the more advanced MK II version.

“The signing of this deal clearly expresses the satisfaction of our customers around the world, with the operational and technical performance of the Heron UAV system,” said IAI director-general Boaz Levi.

The Heron is a medium-altitude long-endurance drone that can perform missions including intelligence gathering, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance, according to the IAI. It was used extensively during the recent fighting with the Gaza Strip in IDF Operation Guardian of the Walls, the statement said.

Herons are in use in over 20 countries around the world. The MK II version has improved operational capabilities and can provide communications with a range of units in real time, including to units in the field.

According to the Globes business daily, Tuesday’s agreement is the fourth UAV deal the state-owned IAI has signed this year. Earlier this year, IAI won a tender by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, known as Frontex, and also signed two other Heron UAV deals in Asia. The previous three deals were together worth around $140 million, according to Globes.

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