Aug 7, 2021 - Science

Fires blaze uncontrolled through Greece amid heatwave

Local residents use tree branches to fight a fire restart in Thrakomakedones, near Mount Parnitha, north of Athens, on August 7, 2021.
Local residents use tree branches to fight a fire restart in Thrakomakedones, near Mount Parnitha, north of Athens, on Aug. 7. Photo: Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP

Fires are spreading through Greece uncontrolled for a fifth day, destroying land and forcing hundreds of people to evacuate the second-biggest island of Evia, Reuters reports.

Driving the news: The fire began in Evia on Tuesday before spreading across thousands of acres of forest in the north, per Reuters.

  • The wildfires, which come amid Greece's worst heatwave in more than 30 years, have destroyed homes and businesses and killed animals.
  • Greece has deployed its army to fight the fires and has received assistance from other countries, including Cyprus, France and Israel. Germany also said it was sending firefighters and vehicles.
  • Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called the situation a "nightmarish summer," adding the government's priority "has been, first and foremost, to protect human lives."
  • Dozens of wildfires emerged over the last 24 hours, with the biggest flames still burning in Evia and areas in the Peloponnese including Arkadia and Ancient Olympia.
  • "(It's) really bad," Thanasis Kaloudis, a resident of Thrakomakedones, told Reuters. "All of Greece has burned."
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