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Firefighters contain wildfires on Greek islands but risk remains

Emergency services take water from the sea in Greece.
Emergency services take water from the sea in Greece. Copyright Petros Giannakouris/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved
Copyright Petros Giannakouris/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved
By Euronews with Agencies
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Greece reported a significant improvement in the situation around forest fires. The vast majority of fires were under control on Friday, firefighters said.

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Firefighters have been able to calm the flames of various wildfires that broke out on the Greek peninsula of Peloponnese on Saturday.

Three wildfires that started in four villages in the region of Ilia have been contained, according to the Greek Fire Brigade. They said ground forces were operating in all three areas, in order to fully control the fires and deal will possible rekindling.

On Saturday residents of the settlements Paleovarvasaina, Karoutes, Strefi and Smila were told to evacuate towards Ancient Olympia.

Greece reported a significant improvement in the situation around forest fires. The vast majority of fires were under control on Friday, firefighters said. They counted nearly 100 fires across the country, half of which lasted less than 24 hours, the Greek press reported. 

Tourism Minister Olga Kefalogianni said the island of Rhodes, where up to 30,000 people had to be evacuated in recent days, was a safe destination and life there was returning to normal. 

However, the risk of further fires remains high due to the weeks-long drought.

Storms in Italy cause havoc among locals and tourists

Meanwhile, violent thunderstorms accompanied by strong gusts of wind hit several areas in the Alto Adige region in north-east Italy, causing widespread damage but no injuries or deaths.

The fire brigade carried out rescues as overflowing mountain torrents swept away wooden bridges, destroyed roads and triggered mudslides.

About 350 Dutch tourists who were stranded in northern Italy due to the severe weather returned to the Netherlands on Sunday morning.

The holidaymakers left Italy for home in seven buses yesterday. Their cars, campers and caravans were so damaged by storms around Lake Garda that they could no longer drive them.

“It looked like there was a war going on. Fortunately, we were in the toilet block and not in our tent. When we came back there was nothing left of our car and the tent", a woman describes.

Hailstones the size of tennis balls fell while the region suffered from severe thunderstorms and flooding.

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