Foreign Officials Flock to Preparedness Drill

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JERUSALEM, Israel - Israel's Home Front Command will host some 70 senior military personnel and defense officials during next week's nationwide emergency preparedness drill.

Following a flood of requests from abroad to observe the exercise, the government decided to allow representatives from France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Uruguay and the United States to participate. 

The Defense Department, working in tandem with the Home Front Command, set up a committee to help the visitors plan their time to glean the most during their time here.

At the end of the exercise, Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilna'i will meet with the foreign participants to discuss the various scenarios and responses.

The five-day drill, which begins Sunday and ends Thursday, is the Home Front Command's third major emergency preparedness exercise since the Second Lebanon War in the summer of 2006.

Government offices, municipalities and regional councils countrywide have been asked to open crisis rooms as realistic emergency scenarios simulate war on the northern border with Lebanon (Hezbollah) and Syria and in the south with Gaza-based Palestinians led by Hamas.

When emergency air raid sirens sound on Tuesday, all Israelis are to enter their sealed rooms and bomb shelters.

Source: The Jerusalem Post

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