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Firefighters among the dead in Turkey as crews battle major wildfires

By
Kyle Barnett
A wildfire burns in the Milas district of Mugla, Turkey, on Monday. So far, eight people have died as a result of dozens of fires across Turkey. Photo by Erdem Sahin/EPA-EFE
A wildfire burns in the Milas district of Mugla, Turkey, on Monday. So far, eight people have died as a result of dozens of fires across Turkey. Photo by Erdem Sahin/EPA-EFE

Aug. 2 (UPI) -- More than 100 wildfires that have burned across Turkey have led to the deaths of several people -- including a couple of firefighters, officials said.

The fires started last week and authorities said some are directly responsible for at least eight deaths. The largest wildfire is burning in Manavgat, which is located about 200 miles southwest of Ankara.

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Officials have said the fires have been fueled by excessive heat and conditions made worse by climate change.

Authorities said two firefighters died over the weekend and tourists have steadily fled to safety. The city of Bodrum evacuated 1,100 people by boat on Sunday.

"Teams continue to work day and night to control the fires by land and air," agriculture and forestry minister Bekir Pakdemirli said, according to Hurriyet Daily News.

So far, the fires have blackened about 235,000 acres and are some of the worst brush fires Turkey has seen in years.

Numerous fire crews and even firefighting drones have been deployed to fight the flames. The governments in Qatar and Croatia have also sent help.

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