TEL AVIV (Jun. 18)
Extensive damage to crops, harvested hay and forests was caused Sunday by over a dozen fires that raged in widely separated parts of Israel.
Arson is suspected in at least three of the blazes, part of an ongoing onslaught of fiery attacks against crops by intifada activists.
Others, however, were attributed by fire-fighters to carelessness and the failure of farmers to abide by warnings not to burn off brush and trash in the event of a Khamsin, the hot, dry wind also known in Hebrew as Sharav.
Sunday’s blazes were increased by such winds.
There was no loss of life to humans or cattle.
One fire raged over the border area between Israel and Lebanon near the Mediterranean coast, endangering installations of both the Israel Defense Force and South Lebanon Army.
The fire trapped a group of unidentified soldiers, who were rescued by local civilian and military firefighters.