The Israeli army claimed it was struggling to face the threat posed by fire-starting kites sent out by Palestinians into the border area between the besieged Gaza Strip and Israel, Israeli Channel 14 reported yesterday.
The channel said the Israeli army fears that the Palestinians will fly thousands of kites loaded with burning materials near the border area during today’s “Great March of Return” protests.
The kites, the channel explained, “quickly became a disturbing phenomenon for the army and the settlers in the region”.
“The army has not yet formulated a method to combat this phenomenon. The iron dome and other weapons cannot combat them,” it said.
According to the channel, on Wednesday six fire-fighting crews participated in containing a fire that broke out in the Be’eri settlement near the border with Gaza. The kite was said to be carrying a container of burning material which ignited after it landed in a wheat field in the area.
Palestinians launched the “Great March of Return” on Land Day which falls on 30 April. This year’s protests are due to continue until Nakba Day on 15 May which marks 70 years since nearly a million Palestinians were forced out of their home to make way for the establishment of the state of Israel.
Some 33 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli occupation forces in the besieged Gaza Strip over the past three weeks since the launch of the “Great March of Return”, while over 4,300 have been injured.