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Greece asks EU help to tackle forest fires
Last Updated: 2017-08-16 13:53 | Xinhua
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GREECE-KALAMOS-FOREST FIRES

Firefighters work near the village of Kalamos, north of Athens, Greece, on Aug. 15, 2017. Greece requested European civil protection assistance on Tuesday to help combat the forest fires raging near Athens, a spokesperson of the fire service, Stavroula Malliri told a press briefing. (Xinhua/Tatiana Polari)

Greece requested European civil protection assistance on Tuesday to help combat the forest fires raging near Athens, a spokesperson of the fire service, Stavroula Malliri told a press briefing.

Due to the ferocity and the large scale of the fire, Greece activated the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism on Tuesday to request the forest firefighting planes to help stop the spread of raging wildfires in the northeastern suburbs of Athens.

According to Malliri, France refused to contribute with 2 pairs of Canadair firefighting planes type CL415 noting that it needs its aerial means to cope with the fires raging inside the country.

Cyprus is going to send six fire engines and 60 firemen to assist Greece's battle against wildfires.

Justice Minister of Cyprus Ionas Nikolaou on Tuesday spoke on the phone with Greek Civil Protection Minister Nikos Toskas to organise the transfer of the firefighting force from Cyprus to Greece, according to Athens News agency.

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