Israel Firm to Build Arizona Border Surveillance Towers

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- An Israeli firm won the federal government's contract to construct surveillance towers along Arizona's border with Mexico.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security awarded the $145 million contract to Elbit's U.S. subsidiary, Elbit Systems of America, headquartered in Ft. Worth, Tx., the Jerusalem Post reported

The project, dubbed the "Integrated Fixed Tower Project," or IFT, will take about a year to complete.

The integrated surveillance towers will be equipped with radar and cameras that can detect an adult up to 7.5 miles away, day or night, and relay video to border personnel at the command posts.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., called the contract "a step in the right direction."

"Arizonans have been waiting more than a decade for the Department of Homeland Security to place the needed technology along our border to support the border patrol and fully secure our southern border," McCain said in a statement.

"The American people have long expected us [the federal government] to secure our borders. The awarding of this contract is a step in the right direction," the senator said, noting it "will give our agents the ability to detect, evaluate and respond to all illegal entries crossing our border."

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