Damascus, Jul 27 (IANS): Firefighters are battling numerous wildfires amid a scorching heat wave in Syria's northwestern province of Latakia and have managed to control most of them, said officials.
Latakia Governor Amer Ismail Hilal said that firefighters have been trying to control new blazes in the area for two days as flames have burned large swathes of agricultural and forest areas, reports Xinhua news agency.
About 70 per cent of regional fires were controlled, the Civil Defense Commander in Latakia told local media.
He noted that the fires randomly broke out in areas not connected to each other.
The current fires in Latakia started on Tuesday in a forest region.
Strong winds and the difficult-to-reach mountainous terrain contributed to the rapid spread of fire.
According to Bassem Douba, director of agriculture and agrarian reform in Latakia, preliminary estimation indicated that over 5 square km were completely burnt.
An investigation into the cause of the fires and a final estimation of their damage are underway, said officials.