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  • Writer's pictureHelen KC | Helen Kotonias

#PrayForGreece Wildfires Rip Through Athens & Mati In Greece Causing Devastation

Updated: Jul 29, 2018

On Monday 23rd of July, one of the nations worst disasters of recent memory struck Greece when fires claimed the lives of residents and tourists. The Greek Prime Minister has declared three days of national mourning.


On Monday 23rd of July, news broke across the globe that wildfires raged through coastal areas in Athens and the small resort town of Mati. Hundreds of tourists and residents fled to the beach for safety, sadly some people became separated from their loved ones, there have been reports of people trapped in cars in an attempt to flee the area and others perished embraced in loved ones arms as they were engulfed by the smoke and flames. Gale force winds, the strongest in eight years combined with dry conditions fuelled the fire in the already soaring 100 degree temperature putting pressure on rescue workers which led to many neighbouring european countries sending help in the form of planes, vehicles and fire fighters, with Cyprus also offering assistance.

This is one of the nations worst disasters of recent memory, the death toll originally reported at 70 has since risen to 81, many more injured and at least 9 in intensive care. The town of Mati no longer exists, with it's blackened trees and crumbling ruins, both reminders of life that once resided there. The government have hinted that the fires appear suspicious. That aside, the first priority is treating the injured, reuniting loved ones, locating the missing, offering emotional support and housing the homeless providing basic needs.

On Tuesday the Greek Prime Minister addressed his country with this quote;

Today Greece is mourning and in memory of those who perished, we are declaring three days of national mourning. However, we should not let the mourning overwhelm us, because this is a time to fight, be unified, courageous and most of all, to have solidarity. - Greek PM Alexis Tsipras

To find out how you can help donate towards helping the victims of this tragedy in Greece, please read my latest blog post titled #AidForGreece

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