At least 26 people have died and dozens more have been injured in forest fires in northern Algeria, the country’s Interior Minister Kamel Beljoud announced this evening.
“26 people have died: two in Setif and 24 in El Tarf,” near the border with Tunisia, the interior minister told Algerian television’s main news program.
In Souk Ahras, residents were running to escape. Four people suffered burns and another 41 are hospitalized with respiratory problems. According to local media, a total of 350 people were evacuated from the area.
Firefighters, with the help of helicopters, are battling 39 fires across the country.
Every year forest fires break out in northern Algeria, but this phenomenon has worsened in the last period, also due to climate change. In the summer of 2021 at least 90 people were killed and more than 1 million acres were reduced to ashes.