On Tuesday, Israel’s Air Force (IAF) held a joint F-35 fighter jet military exercise with its U.S counterparts, despite the Health Ministry’s coronavirus order to keep “social distancing,” because the drill will be held in the air only.

“Today in the afternoon hours, an international military exercise of the IAF and the U.S. military will start over southern Israel, expected to end on Thursday afternoon,” a Tuesday statement by the IDF said.

“The exercise will be conducted only in the air and no meetings will be held on the ground,” the statement said.

According to the IDF, the F-35 fighter jet exercise was planned in advance as part of the IDF’s scheduled exercises in 2020, with the aim of improving “force capabilities and readiness.”

Earlier this month, the IDF called off the remaining part of its joint Israel-U.S. Juniper Cobra exercise over fears of the coronavirus.

The Juniper Cobra operation would have seen 1,000 Israeli and 2,500 U.S European Command soldiers work together over a two-week period to improve aerial defense coordination.