Europe

Two firefighters killed tackling forest fires in Spain

  • 13 August 2010
  • From the section Europe

Two firefighters have been killed in wildfires that have broken out in Spain.

The blazes hit near the village of Fornelos de Montes in the country's northwestern Galicia region.

Galician rural affairs chief Samuel Juarez said that arson was suspected as the cause of the fire, reports the Associated Press.

Meanwhile 50 have been evacuated from a village across the border in Portugal's Peneda-Geres national park.

Reports say the fire in Spain is still being brought under control.

The regional president of Galicia, Alberto Nunez Feijoo, has cancelled all his appointments to focus on the problem.

More than 230 firefighters are still tackling blazes in northern Portugal.

France has sent two water-dropping planes under the European mutual aid system.

Image caption Spain and Portugal have both been hit by forest fires

Earlier this week two Portuguese firefighters were killed on duty, including a 21-year-old woman who died after being trapped by flames.

According to the country's National Forest Authority, 19,346 hectares (47,805 acres) of forest have been burned and destroyed.

The current fires are the latest to have hit Portugal in recent years.

In 2006, six firefighters were killed whilst tackling a wildfire in the centre of the country.

And in 2003, 18 people were killed in blazes described as "the worst in living memory".

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