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Developers might be behind Greek forest fires

Staff Writer | July 26, 2018
Developers might be behind forest fires in Greece which have claimed dozens of lives, a former Polish ambassador has said, according to Poland's PAP news agency.
Greek forest fires
Europe   Forest fires have never been as severe
Former Polish envoy to Greece Ryszard Żółtaniecki said developers were using the fires to gain plots of land for future construction, PAP reported.

The news agency cited Żółtaniecki as saying that forest fires were an annual occurrence in Greece, especially around Athens, but that they have never been as severe as in the past few days.

Żółtaniecki said that Greece's building laws mean that construction cannot take place in a forest, PAP reported.

“When there are no trees, then construction can go ahead. So if the forest burns down, the land is immediately up for grabs for developers,” PAP quoted Żółtaniecki as saying.

At least 74 people, including a Polish woman and her son, have died in the inferno or as a result of it since Monday.