UPDATE- 18 bodies, including 2 children, found in Greece’s wildfire-struck Evros region
Authorities believe deceased are irregular migrants
CHANGES HEADLINE, DECK, ADDS DETAILS, REMARKS BY PRESIDENT, MIGRATION MINISTER
By Ahmet Gencturk
ATHENS (AA) - Eighteen bodies, including two children, were found in the Dadia forest area in Greece’s wildfire-struck Evros region, media reports said Tuesday.
“Charred bodies, all of them males and two of them little children. They were found in groups of two or three and at a distance of 500 meters, obviously as they were trying to escape, and some of them had burned to death inside a sheephold,” Alexandroupolis’ coroner Pavlos Pavlidis was quoted by state-run AMNA news agency.
“As police accompanying me explained, the region serves as a passageway for irregular migrants, on the path from the borders to the hinterland, through the Rodopi mountains,” he said, adding the bodies will be transported to the hospital for autopsies.
Greece’s President Katerina Sakellaropoulou expressed grief about the deaths.
She said effective initiatives are urgently required to fight the wildfires.
Migration and Asylum Minister Dimitris Kairidis expressed sorrow for the deceased, who thought would be migrants, and condemned "the murderous activity of criminal human traffickers and all those facilitating them, and the trade of irregular flows, which threatens the lives of many migrants on land and sea on a daily basis.”
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