At Least 65 People Die As Wildfires Sweep Across Algeria, Including 25 Soldiers Sent To Fight The Flames

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At Least 65 People Die As Wildfires Sweep Across Algeria, Including 25 Soldiers Sent To Fight The Flames

At least 65 people have died in the huge forest fires sweeping the North African nation of Algeria. The deaths include 25 soldiers who were sent by the Algerian state to fight the fires alongside regular fire-crews. Many others have been injured.


The fires have been raging for days and have caused huge damage to farmland, homes and property. Much of the blame for how fast the multiple fires spread is being put on a heatwave in the area which has seen temperatures reach almost 50 degrees Celsius. However, Algerian Interior Minister, Kamel Beldjoud, has said that arsonists were to blame for some for the blazes. He told reporters:


"Only criminal hands can be behind the simultaneous outbreak of about 50 fires across several localities."


The soldiers died in three separate areas, with many losing their lives near the town of Kabylie. It is thought that they were encircled by flames as they tried to extinguish the fire and that they had no route of escape.


Hundreds of people from the town are now displaced and are now being sheltered in nearby government properties.


The Algerian government is said to have requested fire-fighting planes sent from other countries to help fight the fires, with Prime Minister Ayman Benabderrahmane saying his government was in:


"Advanced talks with (foreign) partners to hire planes and help speed up the process of extinguishing fires."


The fires in Algeria come as wildfires rage across the Mediterranean with Turkey and Greece particularly badly hit, and Spain and Italy also experiencing an unusually large number of fires.


A large heat-pocket from Algeria is expected to land in southern Spain and Italy over the coming days, increasing the threat of more fires, just as the Italian island of Sicily records what is thought to be the highest temperature ever recorded in Europe, over 48 degrees Celsius.


Scientists are blaming the record heat and fires on man-made climate change and are due to meet in Glasgow in November in order to agree on new climate change goals.


[h/t: Reuters]


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Thinking Humanity: At Least 65 People Die As Wildfires Sweep Across Algeria, Including 25 Soldiers Sent To Fight The Flames
At Least 65 People Die As Wildfires Sweep Across Algeria, Including 25 Soldiers Sent To Fight The Flames
At least 65 people have died in the huge forest fires sweeping the North African nation of Algeria. The deaths include 25 soldiers who were sent by th
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