Anastasiades: Worst tragedy for Cyprus since 1974

Anastasiades: Worst tragedy for Cyprus since 1974

It is a tragedy that the country has not witnessed since the Turkish invasion of 1974, said President Anastasiades at the Vavatsinia fire fighting effort coordination centre, following a situation briefing by officials.

It is one of the most destructive fires in the history of Cyprus, he added, ‘and unfortunately it has taken lives’.

He further stressed that the relevant services will begin recording the damage caused by the blaze as soon as it is safe to do so.

President Anastasiades expressed his deepest gratitude on the effective response of services, local authorities and individuals, in dealing with one of the most destructive fires that has now spread across 55 square kilometers.

Temperatures and winds are hampering fire fighting efforts, he said, noting that across the communities affected fire service units remain. ‘We are doing everything possible and we will support those effected, including the families of the victims’.

President Anastasiades visited the ten affected communities.

The fire began on Saturday at around 2pm in Arakapas village in Limassol but spread across communities and reached Larnaca. According to fire services spokesman Andreas Kettis, the fire in Odou had resurged.

The fire has a perimeter of 35km surrounding communities in Limassol and Larnaca that has so far left four Egyptian workers dead. A total of 55 square kilometers have been burned./ibna