‘Apocalyptic’ scenes hit Greece as Athens besieged by fire

‘Apocalyptic’ scenes hit Greece as Athens besieged by fire

The city is surrounded by flames. On the ground, there are tales of heroism – and fear for the future

Little had prepared any of us on the Athens-bound flight for the sight of the great fire-induced clouds that swept either side of the plane as it made its descent on Friday.

News of the extreme heat engulfing Greece had spread beyond its borders all week, packaged in increasingly desperate language. Temperatures were breaking records few had ever imagined. If Monday was bad, then Tuesday was worse. In some parts of the country, the mercury had hit 47C (117F), with thermal cameras on drones recording the ground temperature in downtown Athens at 55C.

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