The European Union offered its help to Chile to deal with the wave of fires
The emergency has left 24 dead, more than a thousand injured, thousands of houses destroyed, nearly 45,000 hectares burned and losses estimated at millions
Volunteers carry supplies for firefighters near a forest fire in Puren, Chile, Saturday, February 4, 2023. (AP Photo/Matias Delacroix)
The European Commission has offered the EU's help to combat the wave of forest fires that is ravaging central areas and of southern Chile and which has left 24 fatalities until this Sunday.
“We are closely monitoring the devastating and numerous fires,” European Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic wrote on Twitter. “We are ready to help the authorities in Chile so that the most affected areas receive the necessary support,” he added.
The President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez , reported this Sunday that Spain has sent a plane with a UME contingent to Chile to help put out and control the fires, something that the Chilean president, Gabriel Boric, has already publicly thanked.
On the other hand, the President of Chile, Gabriel Boric, paid this Sunday a heartfelt tribute to Yesenia Muñoz, a volunteer firefighter who died on Friday during the fight against the fires.
The president landed in the town of Coronel, in the region of Biobío, after holding a meeting in the morning with private companies and public organizations, to which he asked for “unity and collaboration” to face the greatest tragedy of these characteristics that the Andean nation has suffered in decades.
A forest fire burns areas in Los Venados, San José de la Mariquina, near Valdivia, Chile. February 05, 2023. REUTERS/Cristobal Saavedra Escobar NO RESALES NO ARCHIVE
In addition to the fatalities, more than a thousand people have suffered injuries of varying severity, more than a thousand families have lost their home, nearly 45,000 hectares have been burned and the losses are estimated at millions.
As soon as he landed, and after greeting the volunteer firefighters -in Chile it is not a professional body-, Boric went to the residence of Yesenia's family, to participate in the wake and extend his condolences.
“I want to tell you that all of Chile cries with you today, that we are here to tell you that you are not alone, that Yesenia's family will not be alone, that we are going to accompany you permanently and also through this hard moment , eternally thank the firefighters and firefighters for the tremendous sacrifice they are making,” he said
“The loss of Yesenia is a reminder of what our firefighters are exposed to every time they go out to fight these fires, and that is why it is tremendously necessary that we be more responsible in these difficult times,” he added.
A firefighter works in a rural area in Quillón, Chile. February 2, 2023 REUTERS/Juan Gonzalez
In line with this argument, the president acknowledged “as firefighters are sacrificing themselves for the people of Chile, our role is to also be with you, with the families, with the victims and today to do our best to combat this tragedy that is hitting us again.”
Currently there are 261 active sources of fire in the regions of Ñuble, Biobío, La Araucanía and Los Lagos, 51 of which are still out of control.
“The truth is that the presence of the president of the republic gives a cloak of encouragement to such a difficult This is a moment in which not only the noble institution of firefighters in Chile de Coronel is experiencing, but also the entire general territory that has been the first line of combat”, said the mayor of Coronel, Boris Chamorro.
< p class="paragraph">With information from Europa Press and EFE