Greece Battles Its Most Widespread Wildfires on Record
Wildfires ravaged northern Greece for a fifth consecutive day on Wednesday and forced the evacuation of settlements on the outskirts of the capital, Athens. The authorities said they were battling scores of blazes around the country after weeks of searing heat turned many areas into tinderboxes.
“It is the worst summer for fires since records began,” said Vassilis Kikilias, the civil protection minister.
Mr. Kikilias said rescue forces were giving “110 percent” in their efforts to douse multiple blazes around the country, noting that 355 new fires had broken out in the past five days — 209 of them in the last 24 hours.
Forces were responding as quickly as possible but gale force winds were hampering their efforts, he said, describing an “unprecedented situation” after a series of heat waves.
Of the many fires, the fronts in the north and near Athens, where blazes had reached Parnitha National Park, were considered the most dangerous.
On Tuesday, the bodies of 18 people, among them two children, were discovered in a forest in the Evros region near the border with Turkey….