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Death toll hits 123 in central Chile forest fires


 , Updated 08:56, 06-Feb-2024

Raging forest fires in central Chile's Valparaiso region have claimed at least 123 lives, the Chilean government said on Monday.

Fires sparked last Friday in different locations have burned more than 11,000 hectares in Valparaiso, and between 3,000 and 6,000 homes have suffered some degree of damage.

The causes of the fires are still under investigation amid an ongoing heat wave hitting Chile this summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

Authorities declared a state of emergency to deploy military troops to help control the fires and channel extra resources to the region.

(Cover: Smoke rises over the forest during a wildfire in Vina del Mar, Chile, February 3, 2024. /CFP)

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