Sunday, August 26, 2007

Greek wildfires reach ancient Olympics site!!!

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This photo taken on Sunday shows the winged statue of victory stands in front of smoke from wildfires in the village of ancient Olympia near the birthplace of the Olympic Games, in southwestern Greece.

A massive effort by firefighters, assisted by water-dropping aircraft and firetrucks, succeeded in keeping a raging blaze away from the 2,800-year-old ruins, one of the most revered sites of antiquity, and the holiest sanctuary in ancient Greece. But the fires burning for three straight days obliterated vast swathes of the country and the death toll rose by 11 on Sunday to 60. Government and firefighting officials believe the fires were likely caused by arson.

"Fires are burning in more than half the country," said fire department spokesman Nikos Diamandis. "This is definitely an unprecedented disaster for Greece."

"We don't know exactly how much damage there is in the Olympia area, but the important thing is that the museum is as it was and the archaeological site will not have any problem," Culture Minister George Voulgarakis told The Associated Press at the site. [From Yahoo News]

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