Serb villages evacuated, wildfires rage unabated

August 25, 2012 18:07


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CACAK, Serbia - Police in Serbia ordered the evacuation of several thousand villagers in the southwest of the country on Saturday as over-stretched emergency services, backed by a Russian plane, battled wildfires scorching the western Balkans.

Near the Serbian town of Cacak, fires raged through hillsides and cornfields dried to a crisp by drought, a Reuters correspondent reported. Several houses were ablaze.

Police said they had ordered the villages of Miokovci and Gornja Gorevnica, near Cacak, to be evacuated.

"The situation ... is extremely serious and both settlements are endangered," said Predrag Maric, head of the Serbian Interior Ministry's Emergencies Department. "We are relocating manpower from throughout Serbia as well as helicopters to fight this."

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