One of the fires broke out near Sapir Academic College.
Fire in southern Israel Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90
Five separate fires were reported on Tuesday after flaming kites were sent from Gaza into Israeli territory near the border fence. Firefighters have gained control over the fires in Netiv HaAsara, Nir Am, Kibbutz Erez and near Sapir Academic College and are currently working to put out them out.
“We exited the library and noticed a fire in the fields across from the college,” a Sapir Academic College student told Hadashot News. “It was really scary and frightening. We didn’t know where to run, where to go, what to do. We then started to see firefighters taking control of the situation and putting out the fire.”
Yesterday, fires were reported in Be’eri Forest, near the train station in Sderot and in a few other places in the border region. Later in the day, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin met with Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas and urged him to condemn the flying of flaming kites into Israel’s territory, which Israel regards as a form of terrorism.
On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered that money used to compensate Israeli farmers for damages caused by the flaming kites be deducted from the Palestinian Authority’s tax revenue.
The flying of kites loaded with burning material has become a popular and cheap form of terrorism over the past months. Its main victims are farmers living in southern Israel, whose crops are often severely damaged by the fires.