Israel brings wide-ranging fires under control, but fears new blazes in extreme heatwave

Firefighters battles blazes in multiple areas around the country, with Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Croatia sending firefighting aircraft to help


Fires across Israel which have driven thousands of people from their homes have reportedly been brought under control, but fears of fresh outbreaks remain high as the country copes with an extreme heatwave.

Croatia, Greece, Italy and Cyprus responded to requests from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for aid in fighting the fires, with the four countries sending firefighting aircraft to the country on Friday morning.

Firefighters spent Thursday battling blazes in a number of areas of the country, including the outskirts of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, as well as the Gaza border.

Approximately 3,500 people have been forced to flee their homes, with dozens of dwellings destroyed, including almost the entire village of Mevo Modiim in the Ben Shemen forest east of Tel Aviv.

Officials are braced for a new round of fires, however, with temperatures expected to exceed 40 degrees celsius in the coming days, reaching as high as a scorching 48 degrees near the Dead Sea.

In 2010, a forest fire in the Carmel Forest in northern Israel killed 44 people, as well as devastating approximately 13,000 acres of woodland.

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