Fire set by Arabs from the Samarian (Shomron) Palestinian Authority village of Asira Al-Qibliya burned a field west of the nearby Jewish community of Yitzhar and damaged dozens of olive trees in the nearby Arab village of Urif, Thursday afternoon.
The fire spread quickly because of the high temperature and low humidity, and was stopped just short of a military tent city and nearby guard position. Nearly 100 Arabs came from Asira Al-Qibliya and rioted, throwing rocks at Yitzhar residents and soldiers who fought the fire. Despite the danger to their lives, the soldiers were prohibited from firing at the stone throwers. They did use tear gas, which mixed in with the heavy smoke from the fire to prove useless. Yitzhar residents threw rocks at the Arabs, injuring one of them, and after a prolonged clash, the Arabs fled back to the houses of the village.