EU Helps Mobilise Planes, Vehicles and Firefighters to Help Portugal
The European Commission has helped mobilise substantial support for Portugal, through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, following a request for assistance to battle forest fires in the country. Spain has offered over 163 firefighters, 27 vehicles and 4 firefighting aircraft – two air tractor aircraft from the EU buffer capacity (FIREGUS) and two Canadair aircraft - which are currently operating in the affected areas.
"Helping Portugal at this time of need is a top priority for the EU. I thank Spain for making support quickly available through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism. This is European solidarity in action. Our EU Emergency Centre in Brussels, which monitors natural disasters 24/7, is in constant contact with the Portuguese civil protection authorities on all developments. Let me commend the hardworking first responders of Portugal and all those across Europe.
They are facing a very tough summer and their dedication is an example for all to follow," said Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides.
This is the second time Portugal has activated the EU Civil Protection Mechanism this summer, following the deadly fires in June. The European Commission offers to co-finance 85% of transport-related costs to countries offering support through the Mechanism during this critical time in the Mediterranean basin when countries' capacities to respond are highly stretched.
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