He specified to Ynet that "between 30–40 incidents contain suspicion of arson. That doesn't mean that there are suspects, rather indications, but in total there are 23 detainees at varying levels of suspicion."
He said that it was not yet possible to determine which arson-initiated conflagrations, if any, had nationalistic motives: "We're just saying where there's a suspicion of arson and where there isn't. Even when we say (that), we're qualifying it because we haven't completed the investigations, and it wouldn't be very responsible.
In some cases, he explained, "the results were caused by prosaic reasons—weather or an electrical short—but a significant portion of the incidents—arson. The intelligence network is analyzing and feeding us information, some of which is relevant. We're using finger prints, sophisticated investigative methods and more."
Arson attempt caught on security camera
Evidence that the blaze in Haifa was caused by arson has not yet been found, but sources in the investigation are not yet ready to rule out the possibility. Following the large fire, which affected 13 neighborhoods, four locations were identified as where the conflagrations broke out: in Romema, the Carmel Center, Ramot Eshkol and Ramat Hen. Five persons were detained and investigated, but they were all released after the investigation revealed that the suspects had no connection to Haifa's fires.
The police are operating to locate and arrest suspects across the country. Two of those detained, according to the report the Israel Police presented to the cabinet, confessed to committing arson. In addition, five persons—three Jews and two Arabs—have been arrested for online incitement. One, Yair Grinshpan, was arrested on Sunday for encouraging others on Facebook to burn Arab villages. He was granted conditional release.
In addition to the above arrests, Sunday afternoon, detectives apprehended six 17 year olds from Jadeidi-Makr, east of Acre, who were found driving away from a brushfire outside the city. The fire was extinguished by firefighting aircraft before it could spread, and the suspects were taken for questioning.