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Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Greece Wildfire Largest Blaze Ever in EU, Say Officials


Wed 30 Aug 2023 | 11:53 AM
Rana Atef

The ongoing forest blaze in Greece is named "the largest wildfire ever recorded in the EU" which forced the bloc to allocate nearly half its firefighting air forces to contribute to controlling the wildfires, the spokesperson of the European Commission Balazs Ujvari said on Tuesday.

Firefighters have been battling the flames for 11 days in the northeast of the European country which have killed at least 20 people.

Eleven planes and one helicopter from the EU fleet was sent to assist Greece in countering the fire in the city of Alexandroupoli, along with 407 firefighters, spokesman Ujvari added.

The EU’s civil protection service said the fire has destroyed over 810 square kilometres (the destroyed space is bigger than New York City.)

The service added: “This wildfire is the largest in the EU since 2000, when the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) began recording data."

Since the beginning of the wildfires on August 19, the bodies of 20 people were recovered. 18 of them migrants including two children were found in a region used as an entry spot from Turkiye.

Greece’s fire service said that the blaze was “still out of control” in the northeast region’s Dadia National Park.

“We’re talking about a huge ecological disaster. The image is tragic,” said forest ranger Dora Skartsis, who also heads a biodiversity protection group in the region.