Fires erupt in northern Israel after cross-border attacks from Lebanon
TAL AVIV: (Web Desk) Israel has attributed large fires broke out in northern Israel to rocket fire from southern Lebanon.

 Israel Fire and Rescue Services said multiple firefighting teams, including an air firefighting squadron, had been deployed, working through the night, as reported by CNN. The flames consumed some 4,000 dunams (1,000 acres or 400 hectares) of the northern region, chief of the Tiberias fire station Boris Eisenberg said.

On Tuesday, Israel Fire and Rescue Services in the north of the country dealt with two blazes. Twelve teams were deployed to Keren Naftali, where a fire had spread in several directions, while 10 teams had been deployed to the Biria Forest in the Upper Galilee area, where a falling Israeli interceptor missile caused a second blaze.

 “We saw the interception and responded with increased forces and high intensity, we are operating on the spot and trying to contain the fire,” spokesperson Uri Cohen told CNN.

“We are dealing with extreme weather conditions, changing winds, high dryness with low humidity, high temperature. All these conditions together accelerate the development of the fire,” Cohen said.

By late Tuesday, all major fires in the north had been brought under control, according to the rescue authority.

Authorities had begun evacuating residents as fires broke out at noon local time on Monday in the mountainous Galilee region, Israeli police said. Israeli police said they helped to evacuate homes in Kiryat Shmona, a northern city near the Lebanese border.

The blazes came after authorities warned the public Monday that a heatwave was expected and cautioned against lighting fires in forests.

Lebanon-based Islamist group Hezbollah said Monday that it launched a “swarm of drones” at an Israeli military command center in the Galilee, causing fires in the building. The group said they were a response to Israeli strikes on Hezbollah forces as well as homes in southern Lebanon, adding that three Hezbollah fighters were killed on Monday.

Thousands of Israeli residents have been displaced after cross-border hostilities began between Hezbollah and the Israeli military in October. The Lebanese group said its attacks on northern Israel were in response to Israel’s war in Gaza.

During a tour of some of the most heavily damaged areas, the Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Major General Herzi Halevi said the IDF was ready to respond if called on.

“We are approaching the point where a decision will have to be made, and the IDF is prepared and very ready for this decision,” Halevi said. “We have been attacking here for eight months and Hezbollah is paying a very, very high price.”

“We are prepared after a very good process of training – up to the level of a military exercise – to move to an attack in the north. Strong defense, readiness to attack, we are approaching a decision point,” Halevi added.