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Wildfires ravage Spain's Costa del Sol

Wildfires ravage Spain's Costa del Sol
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One person has died and several thousands more have been evacuated during a wildfire in Southern Spain.

The fire broke out near Malaga and spread quickly west towards the tourist resort of Marbella on the Costa del Sol.

Several apartment buildings were evacuated, including a housing estate in northern Marbella- forcing residents to take refuge in a sports centre.

Fire fighters – backed by aircraft and helicopters – struggled to control the blaze – in the face of high temperatures and strong winds.

One man said he was only allowed to enter his home for just five minutes to collect his belongings. Another local spoke of her fear because she could not hear or see emergency services arriving: “We called and said the fire had not reached Calahonda, but we were already seeing the fire next to us,” she said.

Local authorities have said they do not know how the fire started, but hope to bring it under control as the wind drops.

Unusually dry weather has led to several wildfires in Spain this Summer and temperatures have hit record highs in some regions.

Four people died in fires in northeast Spain in July, and thousands were evacuated earlier this month in the Canary Islands.

Millions of tourists visit the Costa del Sol every year – attracted by its beaches and nightlife.