In northern Algeria, about 50 fires have started as a result of arson and high temperatures, which threaten several cities. At least 42 people lost their lives. The country’s interior minister, Salah Eddine Dahmun, announced that an investigation would be launched to find the perpetrators of the arson attacks.
At least 42 people have died as a result of forest fires raging in Algeria, east of the country’s capital Algiers. According to the authorities on Tuesday, 25 soldiers were sent to fight the element among the victims. Fires broke out near the town of Tizi Wuzu, about 100 kilometers east of Algiers. The flames quickly spread to the houses, many of which burned down completely.
Algerian President Abd al-Majid Tabbun tweeted that troops were sent to help fight the element in the mountainous Kabyle region of Berber populations.
The head of state added that thanks to the support of the army, about 100 inhabitants of the surrounding villages were saved. The difficult, mountainous terrain and scarce water resources make it difficult to deal with the constantly appearing outbreaks of fires.
Algerian authorities suspect deliberate arson
In total, around 50 fires have broken out in northern Algeria, threatening several cities. According to local authorities, some of them are likely to be caused by arson, and some have exploded due to high temperatures. In these areas, thermometers showed 46 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.
Interior Minister Salah Eddine Dahmun has announced that an investigation will be launched to determine the perpetrators of the arson attacks. “Only criminals can hide behind about 50 fires breaking out in different places at once,” he said. He added that the authorities had asked for help in fighting the fires, and in particular to provide firefighting planes to other countries.
Main photo source: Reuters