Australian firefighters offered to Greece

Australian firefighters offered to Greece

27 August 2007

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Australia / Greece — South Australia has offered to send bushfire experts to Greece to help combat the fires ravaging the country.

With the death toll in Greece rising to 60, acting Premier Kevin Foley said today the Government would also give $100,000 to help those affected by the fires.

“It is clear that Greece is in the grip of catastrophic bushfires and South Australia is standing ready to help in any way we can,” Mr Foley said.

“Australians, more than most others in the world, understand the devastating impact bushfires can inflict on a community.”

Mr Foley said the State Government had spoken to the SA Greek consul and offered to send local experts in bushfire fighting, prevention and mitigation to Greece as soon as possible.

“South Australia has some of the foremost experts in the nation on fighting bushfires, both in terms of how to fight the fire and on bushfire mitigation programs,” he said.

He said that with more than 50,000 people of Greek origin living in South Australia, the Government also wanted to provide help to those who had lost their homes and other property.

“The South Australian Greek Orthodox community was the first in Australia to initiate a special bushfire relief fund in Australia on the weekend,” he said.

“We feel confident that other states will follow South Australia’s lead and I am sure there will be bipartisan support for the Greek bushfire appeal at a federal level.”

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