Thousands evacuate as multiple blazes threaten Israeli communities amid heatwave

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RAMALLAH — Israeli firefighters were battling multiple blazes Friday near communities and major highways across the country, amid an intense heatwave.

Large blazes near six communities led to thousands of residents being evacuated, with one leading a section of the major Route 6 highway to be closed. Two people were lightly hurt by smoke inhalation in one incident.

One fire was burning near the West Bank settlement of Kfar HaOranim Friday morning. Local police said all residents were being evacuated from the community, located near the city of Modiin. Some four homes were reported to have caught fire. There were no known casualties.

“Some 25 teams are at the scene, including volunteers,” Israeli police said, adding that firefighting aircraft were also working to help douse the flames. Windy conditions were said to be making firefighters’ work more difficult, according to the Times of Israel.

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