Thousands of Israelis evacuated as fires rage in northern part of country

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Thousands of people were forced to evacuate their homes after multiple fires broke out in northern Israel.

Most of the Friday fires were caused by extreme heat, although Israeli security forces are also investigating whether the fires in the West Bank were deliberately set by Palestinian extremists, the Jerusalem Post reported.

Six firefighting aircraft were battling the flames from the skies, while 25 teams of firefighters attempted to douse the flames from the ground as nearly 5,000 residents evacuated their homes, with many spending the night in hotels, the newspaper reported.

Authorities called for reinforcements Saturday, with the fire department declaring in a statement, “there is no control over the fire.”