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Wildfires in Rhodes burn for fifth day as village evactuated

Firefighters on Rhodes are continuing to fight wildfires on the island for the fifth consecutive day, as residents were evacuated from a central village on Friday night. Villagers in Laerma received the 112 evacuation text message at around 10.30 p.m.

At first light, firefighting aircraft resumed operations, assisting ground forces. Slovak firefighters have joined the firefighting effort on the island.

A Fire Service representative, speaking on SKAI radio, described the operation on Rhodes as a difficult one, with various challenges in the northern part of the island. Strong winds had pushed the fire south towards Laerma, which resulted in the evacuation order.

The Civil Protection Ministry has warned of a high-risk of fire in 7 of the country’s 13 regions on Saturday, namely Attica; Central Greece (in particular the regional units of Viotia, Evia, Fthiotida, Fokida); the Peloponnese; Western Greece; Thessaly (Larissa, Magnesia); South Aegean (Rhodes); and North Aegean (Samos, Ikaria).