Israel, Greece send help to contain major Cyprus forest fire

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 20, 2016 6:42 AM

NICOSIA (Reuters) - A forest fire fanned by high winds and scorching temperatures spread rapidly in Cyprus's scenic Troodos mountains region on Monday, prompting the dispatch of aerial assistance from Israel and Greece.

The blaze, possibly triggered by an attempt to burn dry stubble, broke out on Sunday in the foothills of the eastern Mediterranean island's Troodos region. The Soleas area hardest hit by the blaze is covered by pine forest and fruit orchards.

Two village communities have been evacuated as a precaution and Israel and Greece were contributing air assets to the firefighting effort, including water bombers. Two Cypriot firefighters were injured, one seriously.

(Reporting by Michele Kambas; Editing by Mark Heinrich)