“Unfortunately, our second meeting is held under the shadow of the unprecedented heatwave and wildfires raging the country. It is a tough test for the citizens of the fire-stricken areas, especially Rhodes. It is a test for the environment, but it is also a big test for the state mechanism that has been fighting on all fronts for many weeks, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said in his introductory speech to the cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
“As I said yesterday in parliament, we may now have more means, more people, better preparation, but we know that this battle will always be difficult as we are already experiencing the effects of the climate crisis and we know that things will probably get worse, not better, with higher temperatures, more drought, strong winds. The morphology of our terrain makes extinguishing the fires extremely difficult in many cases. So we have a tough summer ahead of us. In this confrontation it is important that we had no human losses and the evacuation operations were well organized and effective, especially in Rhodes where the police and the coast guard organized an evacuation of almost 20,000 citizens, mainly tourists,” he noted.
The prime minister pointed out that Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday will be difficult days. “Then I hope the conditions will help us more and that is why we all remain on alert,” he stressed.