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Friday, May 04, 2012

IDF denies it held a secret chemical drill

The IDF is denying that a strong chlorine-like smell that dominated the center of the country on Thursday was caused by a secret chemical drill.
Earlier Thursday, Ramat HaSharon Mayor Itzik Rochberger claimed the IDF's Home Front Command informed him of the odor's source but did not share the information with Ministry of Environment.

"Why was there no synchronization between officials," the mayor said, but did not reveal the exact nature of the substance.

Meanwhile, a central Israel resident suffering from a disease requiring chemotherapy was told by IDF officials that the substance which caused the foul odor was used in the framework of a military drill in Ramat Gan, just north of Tel Aviv.

The resident, Yael, recorded her conversation with an IDF Home Front command representative who revealed the information, and later spoke to police officials who said the material was spread by the Navy. However, officials refused to tell her what the substance was.

Yael, who was concerned about heading out for fear the smell could endanger her given her illness, spoke with various officials throughout the day, and shared the recordings with Ynet.

"The smell resulted from an IDF Home Front Command drill in Ramat Gan" an IDF representative told her. "This drill is being held by a certain Home Front unit, and we don't know precisely what gas is being used."

The army official claimed the substance was not poisonous.


Responding to the reports, the army later said that "there was no connection between a substance used in the framework of a Home Front Command drill to the substance reported in central Israel."

The military claimed that a Home Front Command representative mistakenly linked the odor to the IDF drill in central Israel.

Meanwhile, Environmental Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan said he did not know the source of the odor, adding that according to samples taken by Ministry officials, the unknown substance did not pose any danger to residents.
Well, even if it were true, you didn't really expect the IDF to admit it, did you?

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