Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the IDF head of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, wrote a letter to Tedros Adhanom, the head of the World Health Organization, an agency of the United Nations concerned with international public health, warning that Hamas’ plan to burn a massive amounts of tires on the border with Israel on Friday would be an “ecologic catastrophe.”
“The Hamas terrorist organization, which controls the Gaza Strip, has issued an order to burn about 10,000 tires this Friday along the border with Israel,” Mordechai wrote. “The burning of tires in such a huge quantity will cause severe damage to the ecosystem in the area, will severely harm the life, the flora, and health of the residents, and will add to the severe damage to the aquifer and lead to unprecedented air pollution.”
— فلسطين بوست (@plespost) April 4, 2018
It is supposed that the plan to burn tires is in order to obscure the field of view of IDF snipers who are in place to prevent infiltrators from Gaza. The IDF reported that burning tires were used in the violent protests last Friday to damage the security fence.
“I call upon you, as the head of an international organization whose goal is to promote health and protect natural and environmental resources, to do everything in your power to publicly warn against this ecological catastrophe and to protest Hamas’ irresponsible behavior.”
Ofir Gendelman, an Israeli diplomat and current spokesperson to the Arab media in the Prime Minister’s Office, tweeted another possible motive for burning tires.
Then Hamas will lie & say that Israel used a “new poisonous gas” against Palestinians, when in fact it was the one has INTENTIONALLY caused a cloud of TOXINS that will enngulf Gaza, as a result of its attempt this coming Friday to torch the border w/ thousands of used car tires. https://t.co/3Gc7or0lJ6
— Ofir Gendelman (@ofirgendelman) April 4, 2018
In another tweet, Gendelman added, “This will burn down Palestinian fields near the border and the heavy smoke, toxins, and pollution will cause a huge environmental disaster for Palestinians. But Hamas doesn’t care. Remember that.”
In addition to calling for tires, Palestinian social media also called for women to bring mirrors and laser pointers in order to blind IDF soldiers.
Last Friday, approximately 30,000 Palestinians answered a Hamas call to protest on the border with Israel. After several Hamas leaders spoke at the protests, inciting the crowds, the protests turned violent. At least 16 Palestinians were killed in clashes with the IDF. The majority were identified as members of the Hamas military wing and the IDF stated that all were killed while trying to cross the border into Israel.