Greek boats evacuate people threatened by Rhodes fire

Greek boats evacuate people threatened by Rhodes fire
Greek boats evacuate people threatened by Rhodes fire

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - File photo of a burnt out vehicle is pictured as a forest burns in the background in the settlement of Neoi Pontioi, near Athens, on July 19, 2023. ― AFP pic

ATHENS, July 22 ― More than 20 boats joined emergency evacuation efforts to rescue people from the Greek island of Rhodes tomorrow, where fire has been raging out of control for five days.

According to the Greek coastguard, people were being picked up from Kiotari and Lardos beaches on the east of the Mediterranean island popular with tourists.

Three coastguard boats were leading more than 20 private vessels in the operation, while a Greek navy boat was heading to the area.

According to media reports, around a thousand people have already been evacuated to a safe beach.

According to ERT tv, some firefighters were forced to take refuge in the Ypseni Monastery near Lardos.

The firefighters, along with their commander, were said to be safe but stranded in the monastery after attempting to convince the nuns living there to leave the area.

Deputy Fire Chief Yannis Artapoios said the blaze on Rhodes, which broke out on a mountain in the centre of the island, was the most difficult fire faced by the Fire Department forces there.

Five helicopters and 173 firefighters were operating in the area.

Three hotels in the Kiotari area have been damaged by the fire. ― AFP

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