Disasters & Accidents

Wildfires continue to tear through Southern Europe

(Update 1: Adds the situation in Turkey)

Rome/Athens/Istanbul, Aug 9 (EFE).- Fire crews on Monday continued to battle massive wildfires sweeping through regions of Southern Europe.

In Italy, devastating forest fires have been raging for days in the country’s south and the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, where the authorities have declared a state of emergency.

Nello Musumeci, the president of the Sicilian regional government, said that the state of emergency will be in place for the next six months because of the blazes that broke out at the end of July.

At least 50 fires have erupted on the island over the weekend alone, with the Sicilian capital Palermo among the hardest hit areas.

Two people have died amid the fires in the town of San Lorenzo in the province of Reggio Calabria on August 6.

Residents on the Greek island of Euboea, meanwhile, continued to evacuate their homes as firefighters have been trying to bring large fires under control for the seventh day in a row. Other major fire fronts across the country have been partially contained.

Spain, Cyprus, France, Egypt, Ukraine and Romania have sent firefighting planes and helicopters to help Greece contain the flames.

The fires have come amid a historic heat wave, the worst the country has seen in four decades.

Local media reported earlier that the Greek government has cut over a billion euros in prevention and firefighting over the past decade.

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