The fires that have burned across Israel since Tuesday continue to rage, with new areas threatened by flames as other blazes have come under control.
The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and Israel Police announced Thursday afternoon that they have detained a number of suspects on suspicion of arson.
Channel 2 reported that some 60,000 residents
have been evacuated from the Haifa area in light of fires in the northern port city, according to police estimates as of Thursday afternoon. According to latest figures, there were 30 reports of light injury due to smoke inhalation.
The University of Haifa was also evacuated on as a precautionary move as fires raged closer.
Police Chief Roni Alsheich said on Thursday that only those in neighborhoods affected should leave their homes, in order to leave important traffic arteries free for those who need to evacuate quickly, as well as for the use of emergency services.
Alsheich said residents in neighborhoods which are in need of evacuation would receive automatic SMS notifications.
He added that not all fires will be connected to arson, and said that these rumors will only strengthen the hand of those who seek to cause more terror.