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Fire crews make progress battling Canary Islands wildfires

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Fire crews make progress battling Canary Islands wildfires


Some of Spain’s worst wildfires in a decade have left a trail of destruction. They are still raging in places. In others, there is nothing left to burn.

Helped by weather conditions, firefighters on the small Canary island of La Gomera have made progress in their battle against the flames. But it is too late for those whose homes have been destroyed.

“Thankfully, most people left the village,” said one islander. “Otherwise they would have burned for sure. It is very dangerous. The fire was so strong.”

Over 11 days, 4,000 hectares have been destroyed, including parts of a nature reserve.

Spanish TV says 80 per cent of tourist reservations for the island have been cancelled, adding to the cash-strapped country’s woes.

Critics claim cuts to firefighting budgets have hindered efforts to tackle the fires on La Gomera and on neighbouring Tenerife. Local authorities believe both may have been started deliberately. They have urged police to do all they can to catch those responsible.

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