Dozens killed in Portugal forest fire

DW – June 18, 2017

Dozens of people were killed in central Portugal on Saturday after a forest fire swept across a roadway near the area of Pedrogao Grande, 200 kilometers (124 miles) south of Lisbon. Prime Minister Antonio Costa warned that the number of victims could rise.

Portugal declared three days of national mourning as the death toll climbed to 62.

“It is the greatest tragedy of human lives that we’ve witnessed in Portugal in years,” Costa said. “The priority now is to get the ongoing fire under control – after that, we must understand what happened.”

Some 700 firefighters and more than 200 fire engines are trying to control the blaze. The French government confirmed it had sent three planes to Portugal to tackle the fire.