EU funding comes through for victims of June fires

With wildfires raging in the centre of the country, the government has announced that June’s killer fires at Pedrógão Grande were “a natural catastrophe”, qualifiying the country for EU support of €10 million.

The announcement, made in State newspaper, Diário da República, means funds are now available for people seeking to rebuild.

Requests for help need to be submitted to the online Portugal 2020 programme by August 8, reports Lusa, adding that “there are various kinds of support” available but only those who registered damages with the board of agriculture and fisheries before July 15 will be considered.

Meantime, as many as 1400 firefighters are battling flames of another ‘monster fire’ in the boroughs of Castelo Branco and Sertã today.

Right now there are two active fronts, with many villages evacuated of their elderly and most vulnerable.

In some areas, communities are totally surrounded by fires which began on Sunday, reports Correio da Manhã.

Strong winds are making containment even harder.

Supporting firefighters are as many as 450 firefighting vehicles and 13 planes, two of them brought in from neighbouring Spain.

Once again, the country’s fires have been cited in various international media, with Associated Press suggesting as many as 5000 firefighters are currently “deployed across central and northern areas” in what it calls Portugal’s “daily summertime battle against wildfires”.

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