Greek police have arrested 79 individuals on charges of arson.
The suspects are being held responsible for deliberately starting the deadly fires that have left at least 20 people dead and caused widespread devastation across the country.
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Some believe that the repeated efforts to spark new fires could be an attempt to blame climate change for the catastrophe.
Minister Kikilias, addressing the nation via television, expressed his outrage at these criminal acts that endanger not only forests and property but also human lives. The wildfires have already killed at least 20 people this week.
He emphasized that these perpetrators will not escape justice, as law enforcement agencies are committed to apprehending them.
“You are committing a crime against the country,” Mr Kikilias said.
“Arsonist scum are setting fires that threaten forests, property and, most of all, human lives,” he added.
“You will not get away with it, we will find you, you will be held accountable.”
According to far-left BBC, “Summer wildfires are common in Greece and scientists have linked the increasing frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, including heatwaves, to climate change.”
“Stefan Doerr, who directs the Centre for Wildfire Research at Swansea University, says that more flammable landscapes – due to hot weather or poor vegetation management – mean that arson and other incidents can more easily turn into fast-moving wildfires,” the outlet added.
More from Greek City Times:
The Police and Greek intelligence service EYP are currently investigating the incidents. Pavlos Marinakis, the government spokesperson, stated that out of the 140 arrests made in connection with the wildfires, 79 were related to arson.
The wildfires have been raging across Greece, with a particularly large fire front near Alexandroupolis becoming the largest on record in the EU. Fires on Mount Parnitha near Athens have also been threatening a national park. Tragically, the bodies of 19 people believed to be migrants, including children, were found in the Evros region earlier this week.
Additionally, a shepherd lost his life in the fires in the Boeotia region on Monday. The country is experiencing its worst summer for wildfires since fire-risk maps were introduced in 2009. Last month, thousands of people had to evacuate due to wildfires on the island of Rhodes and other parts of Greece.
Mr Kikilias said on Wednesday the country was going through the worst summer since fire-risk maps were introduced in 2009. Just last month, thousands of people were forced to flee fires on the Greek island of Rhodes after wildfires broke out there and in other parts of the country.
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