Argentina orders armed forces to help fight forest fires

Fires in Parana Delta affecting environment, health of millions of Argentines, says president.

Argentina orders armed forces to help fight forest fires

Argentina ordered its armed forces Saturday to help respond to forest fires that have been burning in the Parana Delta for more than two weeks.

“We cannot allow fires to continue in the Delta that affect the environment and the health of millions of Argentines. Therefore, I have ordered the Armed Forces to take immediate action to stop the fires,” President Alberto Fernandez wrote on Twitter.

Noting that helicopters and army personnel were deployed, Fernandez said necessary steps were taken to find those responsible for the fires that are believed to have been started deliberately.

Santa Fe State Governor Omar Perotti had requested that Fernandez deploy the military to respond to fires in the Parana Delta.

With no rain in sight, the fires continue to devastate the Paraná River Delta. So far this year, more than 131,000 hectares (323,708 acres) have been burned.