Two arrested over Athens wildfire

Two arrested over Athens wildfire

Police in Athens have arrested two men, a Greek and a Bulgarian, on suspicion of accidentally starting a wildfire that ravaged the capital's northeastern outskirts, the fire department said on Saturday.

The two men, aged 67 and 58, will be taken before a prosecutor on charges of accidentally starting the blaze.

The fire that broke out on Friday in the northeastern Athens district of Kareas, at the foot of Mount Hymettus, quickly spread across several kilometres and threatened homes in another three districts before it was brought under control.

Another fire in the southeast of the Peloponnese peninsula, near the coastal town of Neapoli, burned down several homes and devastated agricultural land.

Overall, nearly 80 fires broke out in Greece on Friday, the fire department said, prompting the government to request aid from Europe.

France's interior ministry said it was sending two water-bombing Canadair planes and a reconnaissance aircraft following the appeal.

A new fire broke out Saturday on the island of Skyros.

Authorities have warned that the risk of fire outbreaks remains high owing to strong winds.


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