Jordan and Egypt have joined a host of nations sending assistance to Israel as the country struggles with a rash of fires that have burned for four straight days.
Both of the Arab neighbors with which Israel has peace treaties offered help and Israel accepted, the Prime Minister’s Office said Friday. Jordan will send fire trucks and Egypt two firefighting helicopters.
They will join an international contingent already assisting Israeli firefighting forces who were stretched to their limit by the hundreds of fires. The blazes, some of which were allegedly set by arsonists, have been fueled by unusually dry conditions and strong winds.
Israeli crews were joined Thursday night by eight Palestinian Authority fire trucks and 40 firefighters, who were taking part in the battle to contain the massive blaze in Haifa and at Sha’ar Hagai outside Jerusalem.
The show of solidarity from Egypt, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority was a welcome sign after many Arabic-speaking social media users in Israel and abroad have cheered on the fires, causing the Arabic-language hashtag label “Israel is burning” to reach the third-most trending tag on Twitter in several Arab countries.
Israel was expected to receive further help in fighting the fires. Three firefighting planes from Greece and one from Cyprus are already in action, while overnight one plane from Turkey, two from Croatia, two from Italy and two from Russia arrived and will join the fight Friday, the Prime Minister’s Office said.
Also, the massive US-based supertanker, a converted Boeing 747 that can operate at night, is expected by midnight Friday, the Foreign Ministry said