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Wild weather strikes Israel

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Storms sweeping through Israel have flooded roads, felled trees and delayed public transportation.

The first winter storm of the year struck Israel on Tuesday night and is expected to last through the weekend.

Snow began falling on Mount Hermon and other mountains in the north. Nearly one foot of snow has been recorded on the Hermon, with up to two feet expected by week’s end. Snow is expected later in the week in areas of northern Israel and the Galilee, as well as in high elevations in central Israel.

Snow also is expected in Jerusalem, where authorities have undertaken emergency preparations for the severe winter weather.

Temperatures are expected to be several degrees colder than usual for the rest of the week and dropping each day.

High winds have prevented flights from leaving the Sde Dov airport in Tel Aviv and slowed air traffic at Ben Gurion International Airport.

In Tel Aviv, parts of the city’s boardwalk were under water. Authorities threatened to close the major Ayalon Highway as the Ayalon River continues to rise.

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