Mt. Athos fire forces evacuation, Arcadia in state of emergency [UPDATE]

Hotels in the resort of Ouranoupoli have been evacuated after a fire broke out in Mount Athos in northern Greece and authorities declared the area to be in a state of emergency. A similar alert was signaled in Arcadia, in the Peloponnese, where several villages were affected by a fire that has been burning for three days, razing land and damaging several homes.

Four water dropping airplanes and two helicopters were helping in the effort to put out the blaze near Ouranoupoli, which stared in the area of Monoxylitis. The local mayor asked for elderly people and young children to gather on Ierissos beach for safety reasons.

Authorities in the Peloponnese said that a blaze which started in thee area of Megalopoli, and has been burning for three days, was finally being brought under control. The Civil Protection Authority declared the area to be in a state of emergency however as hundreds of hectares of land were destroyed by the flames.

A 45-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of causing the fire by discarding a cigarette among dried scrubs.

Greece has been experiencing one of its hottest summers on record, leading to dry conditions which fuel forest fires.

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