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İzmir fires ravage 100 hectares land in 2 days

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News | 8/24/2011 12:00:00 AM |

Forest fires that simultaneously broke out in four different areas near İzmir on Tuesday afternoon have finally been extinguished after massive intervention by firefighters, but doubts continue to linger over the cause of the fires.

Forest fires that simultaneously broke out in four different areas near İzmir on Tuesday afternoon have finally been extinguished after massive intervention by firefighters, but doubts continue to linger over the cause of the fires.

The fire that began near Orhanlı village in the Aegean province’s Seferihisar district ravaged across some 100 hectares of land, forcing residents in Gümüldür district’s Göçmen Konutları neighborhood to be evacuated Tuesday as a precaution, before finally being put out Wednesday morning.

Another fire that began in the district of Menemen damaged some 200 hectares of land and was put out yesterday, alongside two more fires near the district of Bornova and the village of Bayındır Alankıyı.

 Only a concerted effort with neighboring districts’ firefighters could extinguish the flames. Ten planes, 11 helicopters, more than 50 fire engines, eight bulldozers, 12 water tanker trucks and hundreds of forest workers with other vehicles were sent from neighboring provinces to help put out the fires, according to the Anatolia news agency.

İzmir Gov. Cahit Kıraç said the Gendarmerie was investigating the cause of the fires, as it was abnormal for separate forest fires to break out simultaneously in the same province. Kıraç also recalled that three people with links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or the PKK, had been arrested in connection with a fire that broke out in İzmir’s Foça district some time ago.

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