President Alberto Fernández has overflown together with local authorities the areas in the Argentine provinces of Corrientes and Misiones which have been devastated by fires.
Where there is an Argentine who suffers, the whole country has to go in support, said the President, who added that we are not 24 districts, but one country.
The head of state stressed the national government had always been in touch with local offocials and sent aid and resources to fight the fires.
Fernández insisted action was necessary to make sure these things do not happen again.
The world has changed and we must understand that there is no time to waste. Climate change is not a problem of the future but of the present, he added.
People have been arrested for allegedly lighting up fires and there are even some videos on the internet attesting to that. Whether those images are true remains to be determined, but there is certainly enough evidence to pursue other lines of investigation and not blame it all on climate change, a Corrientes land owner told MercoPress.
Corrientes authorities have received at least 75 criminal complaints regarding intentional fires in the five judicial districts of the province.
Together with Fernández were the governors of Misiones, Oscar Herrera Ahuad, and Corrientes, Gustavo Valdés as well as Ministers Juan Cabandié (Environment), Aníbal Fernández (Security), Eduardo de Pedro (Interior) and Julián Domínguez (Agriculture).
Fernández praised local firefighters as well as those who poured in from other provinces as well as from Bolivia and Brazil.
After an initial overflight that included the areas of the Iberá Wetlands, the sectors surrounding the Yacyretá Reservoir, and the coastal sector of the city of Ituzaingó, the President descended on the operational base that works at the Ñanderoga Agricultural Family School, where around 250 brigade members from different provinces and the delegation sent by the Bolivian government are housed.
”There has been an epic battle against the fire in the province, working morning, afternoon and night, so I want to recognize everyone's efforts. We are facing the worst drought in 60 years and there are areas that are devastating, with lagoons that have disappeared, so I want the people of Corrientes to have the strength they have always shown throughout our history,” Governor Valdés also said.
Cabandié also announced additional financial help for the preservation of native forests affected by fires, in addition to promoting investments in the production of native plants, and training and implementation for forest restoration, while Domínguez said similar lines of credit at zero interest were being launched to assist producers.
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