Disasters & Accidents

At least four killed in huge forest fire in Cyprus

Nicosia, Jul 4 (EFE).- At least four people were killed on Sunday in a major forest fire in Cyprus, described by the authorities as the worst in the country’s history.

Cyprus’ Minister of Interior Nicos Nouris said the victims were Egyptian agricultural workers employed in a farm in the village of Odou adjacent to where the fire broke out.

The workers were declared missing after their vehicle was found burned on Saturday. Their charred bodies were found earlier Sunday.

Nouris added the fire is said to have been caused by negligence.

A man in his 60s was arrested in the port city of Limassol after a witness claimed he saw him burning shrubs nearby where the fire was first found.

The blaze broke out Saturday amid intense heat, destroying 50 square kilometers of forest and farmland.

Authorities have evacuated several small towns, where dozens of properties have been impacted.

Italy, Israel, and Greece have sent air resources to Cyprus.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said the situation was partially under control, adding the government would take care of those affected.

Cyprus government spokesman Marios Pelekanos said that the strong winds were hampering the efforts of 11 firefighting aircrafts and 70 vehicles in their bid to quench the flames.EFE

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