Fires Are 'National Humiliation'

Officials say blazes are contained, but critics condemn 'national humiliation'
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2007 5:21 PM CDT
A Greek soldier protects his face from the smoke while trying to extinguish a fire in the village of Kapsala in Evia island, north of Athens Greece on Sunday Aug. 26 2007. At least 51 people were confirmed...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Firefighters in Greece said today they have tamed the wildfires that have ravaged the countryside, the BBC reports, but the political tempest over the handling of the crisis is just heating up. As protesters demonstrated in Athens against the government, crews said the fires that have claimed 63 lives are “generally receding” but admitted that some blazes continued.

The dry winds that initially fanned the flames could return and cause further damage, but a fire official said he was “optimistic” about the government’s ability to contain the blaze. With a general election set for next month, an opposition party says the government has blown enough smoke and called its handling of the crisis a “national humiliation.”