The death of a forest fire after a Saturday lunch in the Pedrógão Grande region of Portugal's capital, Lisbon, 200 kilometers north, has increased. The government announced that it was declared a three-day national mourning in the country, and the mourning will be effective from Sunday, yesterday.
The Portuguese Interior Ministry Undersecretary Jorge Gomes said that the number of casualties in the fire has risen to 62 and that the fire on four separate fronts is under partial control.
While most of those who lost their lives were people trying to escape from the fire zone with their automobiles, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa stated that the country was facing the greatest catastrophe of recent years.
According to the Portuguese Civil Protection Unit, 224 fire-fighting vehicles and 692 firefighters participated in the effort to extinguish the fire.
The European Union pledged to help Portugal, whose number of victims is wandering the wounds of a growing forest fire. Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, said: “We will do everything we can to help people and institutions in emergency situations in Portugal.”
Upon the request of Portugal, the EU sent airplanes to the country to participate in extinguishing activities. France and neighboring countries Spain have supported by sending firefighting aircraft to Portugal. The cause of the fire is unclear. (ILKHA)