Jerusalem-area forest fires close roads, evacuate homes

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Three fires that broke out in the forests around Jerusalem set at least three homes and a factory ablaze.

Some 25 firefighting units and seven firefighting planes worked throughout Wednesday evening to control the fires that started in the afternoon.

Two of the fires came near Hadassah hospital, leading to the closing of roads to the medical center in Ein Kerem. Other roads to and from Jerusalem also were closed.

Several dozen homes were evacuated as a result of the fires, which police are investigating whether they were deliberately set.

Last week, a major fire broke out in the forest between the Jerusalem neighborhoods of Kiryat Yovel and Ein Kerem, leading to the evacuation of hundreds of homes as well as the Yad Vashem Holocaust center.