WORLD Israeli firefighters battle blaze near Jerusalem for 3rd day

WORLD

Israeli firefighters battle blaze near Jerusalem for 3rd day

AP

18:12, August 17, 2021

A man films wildfires burning for the second day near Shoresh, on the outskirts of Jerusalem, Monday, Aug. 16, 2021. (Photo: AP)

Israeli firefighters worked for a third consecutive day on Tuesday to contain a wildfire that has consumed a large swath of forest west of Jerusalem and threatened several communities.

Israel Fire and Rescue Service said that 110 firefighting teams accompanied by eight aircraft were working to combat the fire that has consumed around 20 square kilometers (7.7 square miles) of land, making it one of the largest wildfires in the country's history.

On Monday Israel asked regional ally Greece for assistance in fighting the fire, and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said he was also reaching out to Cyprus, Italy and France for possible assistance.

Hot, dry weather and short winters in recent years have left the wooded hills near Jerusalem especially prone to wildfires. The blaze that began Sunday has cloaked Jerusalem in a pall of thick black smoke.

Fire and Rescue chief Dedi Simchi said investigators were still working to determine the cause of the fire.

“The fire broke out as a result of human actions, whether it’s negligence or rashness or malice or arson, we don’t know,” he told reporters on Monday.

Terms of Service & Privacy Policy

We have updated our privacy policy to comply with the latest laws and regulations. The updated policy explains the mechanism of how we collect and treat your personal data. You can learn more about the rights you have by reading our terms of service. Please read them carefully. By clicking AGREE, you indicate that you have read and agreed to our privacy policies

Agree and continue