Sprucing up security as an international competition kicks off here, Iron Dome anti-missile systems were extensively deployed across Israel to ward off a repeat of the recent exchange of missiles between Israel and Palestine. The Eurovision Song Contest is being held in Israel from May 14 to May 18 after Israeli singer Netta won it last year, reported Sputnik. It coincides with Palestinians' Nakba Day, which saw violent protests erupt in Gaza last year. It also begins on the same day that US opened its embassy in Jerusalem in 2018.
The systems are poised to respond to the probability of rockets being fired from the Palestinian side. Tensions are high between Israel and Palestine especially after May 4 when hundreds of rockets were fired at Israel from the Palestinian side, prompting retaliatory action by Israel. At least 25 Palestinians and four Israelis were killed in the flare-up.
Thousands of tourists are in the Israeli capital due to the competition, leading to the need for strengthening security in order to prevent casualties in case of a repeat of the flare-up.
(With inputs from agencies.)