The US Defense Department will soon establish a partial missile shield over southern Europe, probably in Turkey or Bulgaria, to counter potential missile strikes from Iran.

The installation of the high-powered X-band missile-tracking radar will enable the first phase of the shield to be operational by next year.

The new radar will feed early-warning data to US warships deployed in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf that are equipped with the Aegis missile system.

The US will also work with Israel and allies in the Persian Gulf to build and upgrade their missile defence capabilities, according to the Washington Post.

The Israeli radar has begun providing information to the US Navy ships in the Mediterranean.