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Wildfires spread during the hottest days of the year in Spain, Italy and Greece

Firefighters battle fires.
Firefighters battle fires. Copyright AP/AP
Copyright AP/AP
By Euronews with Agencies
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Wildfires spread during the hottest days of the year in Spain, Italy and Greece. Thousands have been evacuated and some homes burnt down.


Wildfires are spreading in the Mediterranean as temperatures continue to rise due to the current heat wave. Some homes have been burned down.

In Greece, strong winds are hampering the work of firefighters, who have had to attend to multiple fronts south, east and west of Athens. 

Three towns and a summer camp with more than 900 children have been evacuated. Police have arrested a man suspected of arson.

The first blaze started in Kouvaras, 50 kilometres southeast of Athens. 

Greece, along with Italy and Spain, has been gripped by a heatwave since last week, with temperatures reaching 44 degrees Celsius (111 degrees Fahrenheit) in the centre of the country.

AP Photo
A man tries to extinguish the fire with a hose near Loutraki 80 Kilometres west of Athens, Monday, July 17, 2023.AP Photo

In Spain, the fire that broke out on Saturday on the island of La Palma is gradually weakening, although it still has several active fronts. Authorities estimate that some 3,500 hectares and 20 buildings have been burnt. 

Most of the 4,000 people who were evacuated on Saturday have already returned to their homes.

The heat wave and the risk of fires have also reached Italy, where thermometers could comfortably exceed 40 degrees these days.

Predictions of historic highs in the coming days led the health ministry to sound a red alert for 16 cities including Rome, Bologna and Florence. The Acropolis in Athens, one of Greece's top tourist attractions, closed for a third day running Sunday during the hottest hours.

AP Photo
A man holds an umbrella as he and other tourists enters the ancient Acropolis hill during a heat wave, in Athens, Greece, Thursday, July 13, 2023.AP Photo

 Police are investigating the origin of the fire that broke out Sunday night at Catania airport. Authorities have suspended all flights until Wednesday.

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