Pendeli fire suspect held

A 57-year-old man, who has been linked to a blaze that ravaged Mount Pendeli last week, was yesterday remanded in custody after testifying before an investigating magistrate. The unnamed man claimed that he was at a cafeteria last Thursday morning when the four fires appeared, virtually simultaneously, on the mountain’s slopes. His alibi has been backed by several witnesses but other witnesses claimed to have seen him near the site of the fire. Last night firefighters were struggling to contain a blaze that broke out in Albania and crossed the border into Kastoria. Ground forces were aided by two water-dropping aircraft and a helicopter. Several other fires broke out across the country yesterday, fueled by rising temperatures, and burnt tracts of forest and farmland. No damage to homes was reported. Blazes that broke out in Argolida, Arcadia and Evia were under partial control by late yesterday. A fire in Messinia approached two villages but was curbed by late yesterday.