ALGIERS: The death toll as wildfires sweep across regions of Algeria has risen to 34 people, including 10 soldiers yesterday, the interior ministry said, as a heatwave spreads across north Africa and southern Europe.
Some 8,000 firefighters were battling to bring the flames under control, authorities said.
The interior ministry said that it is continuing its firefighting operations in the Boumerdes, Bouira, Tizi Ouzou, Jijel, Bejaia, and Skikda regions.
About 1,500 people have been evacuated so far.
The authorities have launched a judicial investigation into the causes of the fires.
A major heatwave is sweeping across north Africa, with temperatures of 49 °Celsius recorded in some cities in neighbouring Tunisia.
In Tunisia, wildfires swept through the border town of Melloula. Witnesses told Reuters that fires that had begun in mountainous areas had reached some people’s homes in the town and forced hundreds of families to flee.
A civil protection official said they had evacuated hundreds of the town’s residents by land and by sea, in fishermen’s boats, and coastguard vessels.