Israel Closes Gaza Crossing Following Incendiary Balloon Attacks

Palestinian trucks are seen leaving the main commercial crossing into Gaza, Kerem Shalom, in the southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday. (Reuters/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa)

Israel on Tuesday closed one of its main border crossings with the Gaza Strip after Palestinians launched incendiary balloons that set fire to areas on the Israeli frontier.

Israeli media reported that more than 30 fires were set around border communities by balloons carrying incendiary devices launched from Gaza.

“Kerem Shalom Crossing will be closed for the passage of all goods, with the exception of the entry of essential humanitarian equipment and fuel,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

Kerem Shalom is one of three main Gaza border crossings with Israel and Egypt, but it is where most goods pass through daily.

B’chasdei Shamayim, no injuries were reported due to the fires, but almost 100 acres in the Be’eri nature reserve were damaged, according to Channel 12 news. Minor fires were reported around the communities of Nachal Oz and Erez in the Sha’ar Hanegev region, as well.

Mayors of communities in the Gaza periphery demanded action yesterday to suppress the attacks. “Our daily lives are again and again interrupted, by ear-ringing explosions, by fires, by rocket launches on a constant and ongoing basis. All of this, during a medical and economic crisis, which has also left its marks on our region,” the mayors said in a statement.