Aerials of Israeli shores after offshore oil spill

Dozens of Israeli soldiers gathered on a beach near Haifa to remove the clumps of sticky black refuse from the pale beaches as the military said it was deploying thousands of soldiers to help thousands volunteers who have been cleaning the beaches in the past

few days.

The authorities warned everyone else to keep their distance until further notice.

Israel said it was trying to find the ship responsible for the oil spill that drenched much of its Mediterranean shoreline with tar, an environmental blow that will take months or years to clean up, officials said.