The exercises cover potential Iranian retaliation to the shelling of its nuclear facilities Israeli Air Force exercise “Blue Flag,” November, 2017 © Getty Images / picture alliance / Contributor

For the first time, the Israeli Air Force’s (IAF) major ‘Chariots of Fire’ exercises will include practice drills for a “wide-scale strike in Iran,” the Times of Israel reported on Tuesday, citing sources.

The drills over the Mediterranean Sea will begin on May 29th during the fourth and final week of the monthlong exercises.

“In light of growing uncertainty regarding a return by Iran to the 2015 nuclear deal, amid long-stalled negotiations with the United States, the Israel Defense Forces in the past year has ramped up its efforts to prepare a credible military threat against Tehran’s nuclear facilities,” the newspaper said.

According to the newspaper, a potential strike by Israel on Iran poses several challenges for the IAF: It has to find ways to shell the Iranian nuclear facilities that are located deep underground, to somehow bypass “increasingly sophisticated” Iranian air defenses, and to prepare for retaliation by Iran and its allies.

Iran issues military warning to Israel Iran issues military warning to Israel

“The upcoming drill is also expected to focus on preparing for and responding to such retaliation,” the report said. (RT)