(October 2, 2018 / Israel Hayom) An incendiary attack balloon was discovered on Monday night in an industrial zone in central Israel, said police.
This was the first time that a Palestinian airborne incendiary device has been detected this deep inside Israeli territory.
Over the last six months, balloons and kites carrying firebombs or explosives have been regularly launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel, sparking countless fires and causing extensive damage.
The balloon was found in the Ligad Technology Park in Modi’in by passersby. Police sappers were called to the scene and were able to neutralize the device safely.
Modi’in, located some 35 kilometers (22 miles) southeast of Tel Aviv, has several neighboring Palestinian villages.
A police source said that the incident was in line with several similar cases indicating Palestinians in the West Bank may be trying to mimic the attacks from Gaza and launch incendiary balloons into central Israeli cities.
Meanwhile, incendiary kites and balloons sent over the Israel-Gaza border sparked eight fires in border-adjacent communities over the holiday weekend, causing moderate damage.
The Palestinian arson terrorism campaign has so far decimated nearly 10,000 acres of forest and farmlands on the Israeli side of the border, causing millions of dollars in damage to the area.
Environmental experts say it will take at least 15 years to rehabilitate the vegetation and wildlife that have been destroyed.