At least 20 killed by wildfires in Greece

Прибережне місто Маті у Греції майже повністю знищило вогнем – новини

Majority were tourists who had tried to find refuge but did not make it.

Georgia Trismpioti, a senior humanitarian affairs officer for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Athens, said: "Hellenic Red Cross volunteers are continuing to provide first aid and search and rescue activities in and around Mati, and they have been there since the very first hours of this devastating wildfire".

The coast guard earlier said the bodies of three women and a child were found in the sea.

He said he saw his daughters, Sophia and Vasiliki, alive on TV news footage as they got off a fishing boat which had rescued them.

"The country is going through an unspeakable tragedy", he said. Tsipras announced three days of national mourning.

"But we mustn't let mourning overwhelm us, because these hours are hours of battle, unity, courage and above all solidarity".

At least 50 people are now known to have died. Of the 156 people injured, 11 were in intensive care, they added.

Rescuers arrive at the area where dead bodies were found following a wildfire at the village of Mati, near Athens, on July 24, 2018.

"I believe the that the resilience of the Greek people will see the nation through this very hard time".

DW's Charlotte Chelsom-Pill, who is in Mati, near Rafina, said the blaze in the resort town was now out but dozens of people were still thought to be missing.

Turkey has offered to send firefighting aircraft to neighboring Greece after twin wildfires tore through areas near Athens. "The fire was in the distance, then sparks from the fire reached us".

Dramatic video footage showed people fleeing by auto as the tourist-friendly Attica region declared a state of emergency. "This is an extreme situation".

Cars are blocked at the closed National Road during a wildfire in Kineta, near Athens, on Monday.

Officials said at least six major fires, fueled by strong winds and forests in towns near Athens, are burning across Greece. Boats plucked some out of the water while others were picked up on the shore and taken to safety.

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima released a statement expressing "enormous sympathy" to those affected by forest fires raging in Greece.

Thick smoke reduced visibility on the highway to mere metres.

Later in the day a Greek official told Skai TV the death toll exceeded 60 people.

Some residents used garden hoses to try to save their properties while others escaped in cars and on mopeds.

The coastal region on the western side of Attica, Kineta - around 54 kilometers (34 miles) west of Athens - was evacuated when fires broke out Monday afternoon in a forest in Geraneia Mountains that surround the area. Hundreds of children were also evacuated from holiday camps.

Rafina's mayor said he believed about 100 houses in that area had burned.

The fire was able to form quickly and easily in Mati due to current heatwave temperatures gripping the country.

The official death toll Tuesday from the deadly fires that broke out Monday stood at 50.

Her sister had gone swimming, Saridou - who survived with light burns to her foot - said, but they became separated in the chaos of the fire.

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