Israel Fires And Heatwave
Wildfires coupled with record heatwaves are hitting Israel.
Fires were occurring mainly in a wooded area between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, where ground teams and aerial tankers fought the flames for hours. Thousands of residents in small towns were evacuated, officials said. More than a dozen houses burned down.
Some fires were suspected to be caused by arson.
Jerusalem recorded temperatures of 37.5 degrees Celsius on Thursday afternoon - its May average is 26C. The heat was even more stifling in areas to the west. One Tel Aviv suburb hit 43.5C, according to the Israel Meteorological Service.
The heatwave was expected to continue into Friday, with temperatures near 30C in Jerusalem by the weekend.