An Israeli firefighting team helping Macedonia battle a spate of summer wildfires concluded operations on Thursday and is to return to Israel over the weekend.
The delegation of the Israel Police, which operates the country’s firefighting planes, has been in Macedonia since last week. It carried out some 40 flight hours helping to extinguish a number of wildfires.
The 22-person delegation included two firefighting planes, and two Israeli Air Force transport planes that flew the delegation to Macedonia, according to Channel 2.
It dropped 120,000 liters of fire retardant on areas where blazes raged in the landlocked Balkan nation.
This is the second time in the past month that Israel has helped extinguish fires in nearby countries. Two weeks ago, a similar delegation of two firefighting planes flew to Montenegro to help battle a wave of fires that hit the country.
In November 2016, Israel’s firefighting air squadron was removed from the Fire and Rescue Services and placed under the control of the Israel Police in a bid to improve coordination among air rescue forces. Israel is working to establish an international firefighting force along with several other countries in the region, including Cyprus, Greece and Croatia.