Police suspect 'wave of nationalistic arson attacks'

Dozens of firefighting crews, planes needed to control Kiryat Tivon blaze, homes burned, residents evacuated.

Israeli Fire and Rescue Service plane 150 (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Israeli Fire and Rescue Service plane 150
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Police said on Thursday that they suspect a spate of fires over the past two days is part of a “wave of nationalistically motivated arson attacks.”
It took some 30 firefighting crews, as well as firefighting aircraft, to gain control over a fire in Kiryat Tivon, southeast of Haifa, on Thursday afternoon. It was the second blaze in the area in as many days.
Police evacuated several people from their homes. An old age home was also evacuated.
At least two homes were damaged by the flames, but no injuries were reported.
The municipality opened a shelter for displaced people at the Narkisim school in Kiryat Tivon.
Asst.-Ch. Hagai Dotan, head of the Coastal Police, said the fires may be a form of nationalistic attack.
Police arrested four Palestinians from the West Bank whom they found in the vicinity of a fire near Jerusalem on Wednesday, on suspicion of involvement in starting the blaze.
Dotan said that police and Fire and Rescue Services were on high alert due to the threat of additional arson.
Earlier on Thursday, firefighters succeeded in gaining control of a fire just outside Jerusalem near Moshav Even Sapir.
Wednesday saw firefighters battle blazes in the same areas, as well as on in the eastern Carmel mountains.
No injuries were reported.