שריפה ביער שוקדה
A wildfire in Shokeda Forest in southern Israel caused by a Gaza arson balloon
Photo: Itzik Lugasi
A local extinguishes a wildfire caused by a Gaza arson balloon near Kibbutz Yad Mordechai in southern Israel

Gaza incendiary balloons spark fires in Israel's south for 7th straight day

Locals fight wildfires caused by incendiary balloons as acts of aggression on border communities persist; IDF missile hits accidentally agricultural structure in Israeli kibbutz, no casualties reported

Matan Tzuri |
Published: 08.12.20 , 12:09
Two wildfires broke out Wednesday morning near the Gaza border due to balloon-borne explosives launched from the Gaza Strip for the seventh straight day.
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  • Locals extinguished two fires in Kibbutz Yad Mordechai and near Kibbutz Zikim.
    שריפה מבלון תבערה במתחם שיחזור הקרב מ-1948 בקיבוץ יד מרדכישריפה מבלון תבערה במתחם שיחזור הקרב מ-1948 בקיבוץ יד מרדכי
    A local extinguishes a wildfire caused by a Gaza arson balloon near Kibbutz Yad Mordechai in southern Israel
    The IDF said on Wednesday that it has carried out strikes on Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip with tanks, attack helicopters and fighter jets in response to the launch of balloons carrying incendiary devices from the enclave towards Israeli communities.
    A missile launched from an IDF helicopter toward the Gaza Strip landed on Wednesday in a kibbutz near the border fence.
    The missile fell near a cowshed and did not explode. No casualties were reported, but the projectile did damage a structure in the dairy farm.
    The IDF said that it had opened an investigation into the incident.
    מסוק טיל קיבוץ חולית אשכול רצועת עזה תקיפה צה"למסוק טיל קיבוץ חולית אשכול רצועת עזה תקיפה צה"ל
    An agricultural structure damaged by a rocket falling from an IDF helicopter in southern Israel
    The rocket landed near the calf pens. Dozens of them were traumatized by the sound of impact and struggle to get on their feet, according to farmers in the unnamed Kibbutz.
    Israel has launched a warning to terrorist factions in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday after over 60 wildfires broke out in areas near the Hamas-ruled territory due to balloon-borne explosives.
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that the Gaza Strip will pay a heavy toll if terrorists continue to fly incendiary balloons into Israeli soil.
    "The balloon terror will carry a heavy price. We will not put up with it. We will act and the toll will be high," said Netanyahu. "I want to make it clear to all of Iran's proxies, including Gaza. We did it before, and they better not forget it because we will do it again."
    שריפה ביער שוקדהשריפה ביער שוקדה
    A wildfire in Shokeda Forest in southern Israel caused by a Gaza arson balloon
    (Photo: Itzik Lugasi)
    Defense Minister Benny Gantz said that Israel halted the transfer of goods to the coastal enclave through a major border crossing as a result of the ongoing tensions and cautioned Hamas that Israel will act harshly if these acts of aggression against it carry on.
    "Hamas allows incendiary balloons and explosive balloons to be flown into the State of Israel and we are not ready to accept it," said Gantz. "We closed the Kerem Shalom Crossing as a result. They would do well to stop disturbing the security and peace in Israel. If that does not happen, we will respond."
    Nearly 500 acres of forests and agricultural lands have burned since Gaza terror faction renewed the launch of incendiary balloons last Wednesday. There were no casualties reported.
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