Along with the West, Israel believes Iran's uranium enrichment activities are aimed at producing nuclear weapons, an allegation Tehran denies.

Israel is also thought to be targeting Syria with its satellites. In 2007, alleged Israeli warplanes struck a site in Syria thought to be a nuclear facility under construction, although Israel has not commented on the incident.

Besides its spy satellites, Israel also has a number of communications satellites in orbit.

Israel is widely believed to be the Middle East's only nuclear power.

An attempt to launch an Ofek-6 in 2004 failed with the satellite crashing into the Mediterranean Sea after a technical malfunction with the launcher.