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Cyprus

Cyprus offers to send firefighters to Portugal

File photo

Cyprus is ready to send a team of firefighters to Portugal to help put out forest fires, President Nicos Anastasiades said on Monday.

According to an announcement, in his message of condolence to Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio da Costa, Anastasiades conveyed his “great sadness” about the fires in central Portugal, that have already taken the lives of tens of people and continue to cause death and destruction.

He also extended condolences, on behalf of the people and the government of Cyprus, tο the families, friends and loved ones of those killed, as well as wishes for quick recovery to those injured.

“I also want to take this opportunity to commend the bravery shown by the firefighting teams trying, under extreme conditions, to contain the fires. Cyprus is ready to send to Portugal a team of firefighters, in coordination with the EU’s Civil Protection Mechanism, to help the efforts to stop the raging fires,” the President concluded.

The huge forest fire raging since Saturday in central Portugal has killed at least 62 people, the government said on Sunday, in what is possibly the deadliest-ever forest blaze in the Atlantic coastal country, used to the woods burning almost every summer.

Another 54 people have been injured and taken to hospitals, including four in serious condition.

The blaze on Saturday hit the mountainous area amid an intense heat wave and rainless thunderstorms. Police said a lightning striking a tree probably caused the fire.
H
undreds of firefighters were still battling the flames on Sunday. Various local motorways were shut for safety reasons.

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