Twin wildfires near Athens kill 20, gut vacation resorts

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ATHENS: Gale-fanned wildfires raged through holiday resorts near Greece‘s capital, killing at least 20 people by early Tuesday and injuring more than 104, including 11 in serious condition, in the deadliest blaze to hit the country in more than a decade.

Greece sought international help through the European Union as the fires on either side of Athens left lines of cars torched, charred farms and forests, and sent hundreds of people racing to beaches to be evacuated by navy vessels, yachts and fishing boats.

Winds reached 80 kph (50 mph) as authorities deployed the country’s entire fleet of water-dropping planes and helicopters to give vacationers time to escape. Military drones remained in the air in the high winds to help officials direct more than 600 firefighters below.

“We were unlucky. The wind changed and it came at us with such force that it razed the coastal area in minutes,” said Evangelos Bournous, mayor of the port town of Rafina, a sleepy mainland port that serves…

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