'The Animals Are on Fire' in Devastating Wildfires That Have Killed at Least 8 People in Turkey

While 117 wildfires have been deemed "under control," at least eight are reportedly still raging

Photo: Mahmut Serdar Alakus/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

At least eight people have died in a series of wildfires in Turkey that have been ravaging the country for six days, according to multiple reports.

While 117 wildfires have been deemed "under control," at least eight are still raging, many near popular seaside tourist destinations such as Antalya and Mugla, the Associated Press reported.

Seven people were killed in fires in Manavgat, Antalya Province, while another victim died in Marmaris, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported, according to CNN.

Among the dead are two firefighters and a Turkish-German couple who were reportedly found in a residence.

At least 27 people affected by the fires are still receiving treatment in the hospital, while hundreds more have been treated and released, health minister Fahrettin Koca told the AP.

Ozan Efeoglu/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

"The animals are on fire. Everything is going to burn," Muzeyyan Kacar, a farmer in the small coastal village of Kacarlar, told CNN. "Our land, our animals and our house. What else do we have anyway?"

Another farmer, Nurten Almaz, said she, too, lost everything, including her animals, her home and "one century of people's labor."

"I feel so much pain, like I lost a child," she told the AP.

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To escape the blazes, many people, residents and tourists alike, left by boat, with more than 1,000 people evacuating by sea in the tourist town of Bodrum, CNN reported.

"We helped the evacuation of 1,140 people by 12 boats," Orhan Dinc, president of Bodrum Maritime Chamber, told the outlet. "We did evacuation by boats yesterday as well, but I have never witnessed something similar before in this region. This is the first time."

Multiple firefighting helicopters — from countries including Croatia, Spain, Ukraine, Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran — have been attempting to quell the flames from the air, as some of the fires are not reachable by land, the AP reported.

While the exact cause of the fires remains unknown, and investigations are underway to look into whether they may have been started by Kurdish militants, the AP reported that "experts mostly point to climate change along with accidents caused by people."

Turkey is not alone in its battle against the blazes; there have also reportedly been fires in Sicily and in Greece due to a heat wave across southern Europe that has been fed by hot air from North Africa.

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