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Dozens flee homes as wildfires rage in Greece

Friday, July 17, 2015 - 01:25

Forest fires fanned by strong winds and high temperatures threaten homes around Athens and in other parts of southern Greece. Jillian Kitchener reports.

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As if a major economic crisis wasn't enough to deal with, fires are sparked close to the Greek parliament. Police say dozens are raging across the country. Residents flee their homes as smoke billows overhead. And firefighters, along with volunteers, struggle to contain the flames. Speaking at a Crisis Operations Center in Athens, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is calling for order: (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) GREEK PRIME MINISTER, ALEXIS TSIPRAS, SAYING: "Everybody needs to stay calm. Obviously, we will require volunteers contributing wherever it is allowed by the fire brigade that are in charge of the operations." Neighborhoods burn. Dozens of people rush to douse the inferno... shocked by flames coming from all angles. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) KAREAS SUBURB RESIDENT, SAYING: "It started on the side - on that side - and then before we even went outside to check it out, it started on the other side as well. So, probably they set fire on two, three places simultaneously." More than 140 firefighters are deployed near Athens. But the Prime Minister says it's not enough. He's calling on the air force and armed forces for help.... as well as other European countries with extra aircraft. He, along with the Greek people, say they want the smoke to clear.

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Dozens flee homes as wildfires rage in Greece

Friday, July 17, 2015 - 01:25