Algerian president say gov’t to compensate people affected by wild forest fires

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Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Monday ordered the government to pay damages to the people affected by forest fire in northern provinces.

Interior Minister Noureddine Bedoui announced the decision during a visit to the province of Tizi Ouzou, 150 km eastern Algiers, where some regions were hit by wild fires.

Bedoui told reporters that Bouteflika “reassures the population that were hit by fires that government is due to pay them damages, as a commission is due to count losses in livestock, fruit trees, dwellings.”

But he did not disclose how the compensation will be paid.

Several forest fires were reported in recent weeks in some northern provinces, damaging more than 1500 hectares of land from July 6-12, and another 1079 hectares of land from June 1 to July 5, according to a statement by the Fire-fighting Department.

The fires have raised doubts about the capability of Algeria to deal with natural disasters, including forest fires. Forest fire-fighting units lack adequate means to do their job efficiently, due to some reasons including the lack of fire-fighting planes.

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