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Residents of Yitzhar report five arson attacks in the last two days, emphasizing 'there is no difference between this and other terror.'
By Ido Ben-Porat
First Publish: 5/29/2016, 4:37 PM
Arab assailants from the village of Urif in Samaria set two fires adjacent to the Jewish town of Yitzhar last Friday afternoon, report residents of the Jewish town.
The town's firefighter team, together with soldiers and residents, struggled against the large blazes just west and south of Yitzhar for over two hours, until they finally achieved control over most of the fire.
Then over Shabbat on Saturday, the Arab attackers lit three other fires at various points around the town. The blazes were controlled just before they had the chance to spread out and cause serious damage.
In the Shabbat assault the assailants came from the further towns of Huwara and Einabus as well as Urif, and they lit a fire just beneath the eastern neighborhoods of the town.
The arsonists were identified by the security coordinator and an army force who were conducting surveillance on the site, allowing a quick response to put out the fire.
Residents of Yitzhar note that Arab arson attacks take place every summer, mostly on Fridays and Saturdays so as to target their Shabbat observance. Due to the relatively remote location of the town it is impossible to wait for firefighting units to arrive.
"The residents drop everything and run, sometimes in their Shabbat clothes, in order to fight the fire," said Uriya Cohen, director of the local council.
"This is terror to all intents and purposes," he clarified. "There is no difference between an Arab who throws a firebomb at a car, and one who lights a fire whose goal is to reach homes in the town."
"It cannot be that residents and young guys are distanced from Yitzhar with no reason and no evidence on an arbitrary administrative order, even as the Arab terror is going wild," added Cohen.