Text size

El Al Israel Airlines has installed anti-missiles systems on its passenger aircraft, completing an overhaul launched after a 2002 attempt to shoot down a plane, security sources said on Wednesday.

They said the "Flight Guard", an Israeli-made system costing around $1 million per unit, was operational on the entire El Al fleet. It was not immediately clear if this applied to five planes leased by El Al as well as its own 29 aircraft.

El Al, Israel's national carrier and largest airline, declined to comment, saying it did not discuss security issues.

Israel stepped up efforts to adapt military anti-missile systems for its civilian aircraft after an Israeli charter jet came under attack from shoulder-held missiles in Kenya in 2002.

The missiles, fired by attackers linked to al-Qaida, missed.

Flight Guard was developed by state-owned Israel Military Industries and the Elta defense firm - a unit of state owned Israel Aircraft Industries. El Al began installing the system in its planes in 2004.