At least 38 people were killed and more than 200 injured in raging wildfires across Algeria over the past couple of days.
Most casualties were near the northern Algerian-Tunisian border, in the province of El Tarf, where 24 people were found dead on August 18. Most of them were vacationers.
12 of them were on a public bus engulfed in flames as it traveled through a mountainous area.
2 other individuals died in the Setif region, some 300 km (180 miles) east of Algiers, and one in Souk Ahras, south of El Tarf.
On Wednesday, August 17, 39 wildfires started in 14 regions, including 16 in El Tarf, Interior Minister Kamel Beldjoud said, suggesting some of them were started deliberately.
A journalist in El Tarf described the fire in El Tarf as ‘a tornado of fire’ that swept everything away in seconds. “Most of those who died were surrounded while visiting a wildlife park,” he said.1
Algerian television showed videos of people fleeing their burning homes and women carrying children in their arms.2
1 Wildfires kill dozens as they tear through forests in Algeria – ABC – August 18, 2022
2 ‘Fire tornado’ kills dozens at Algerian zoo: Raging forest blaze ‘sweeps everything away in seconds’ at wildlife park and incinerates 12 people trying to escape flames in a bus – Mail – August 18, 2022
Featured image credit: Ifriqiya (stillshot)
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