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Police investigating fires near Jerusalem

JERUSALEM (AP) – Two large forest fires on the outskirts of Jerusalem sent smoke wafting across the city and temporarily closed the main highway to Tel Aviv.

Police say several people were treated for smoke inhalation, and an unknown number of people were evacuated from the affected area before the blaze was brought under control Tuesday.

Traffic on the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway, one of the nation’s busiest, was backed up for about 50 kilometers (30 miles).

Jerusalem police chief Niso Shaham said the fire was probably set deliberately. Several arrests were made over the past few weeks in series of suspicious fires that caused damage in Jerusalem, he said.

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