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November 19, 2019

Death Toll Rises to 7, as Greece Remains in Shock After Mega-Storm

Large parts of the west coast of Halkidiki are completely devastated

The death toll has risen to seven from Wednesday’s massive storm that relentlessly hit the popular tourist region of Halkidiki in Northern Greece’s Central Macedonia.

Among the seven people who lost their lives from the extreme weather are six foreign nationals, including two children.

An 8-year boy and a 54-year woman from Romania were killed when the roof of a restaurant they were dining at fell as a result of gale-force winds, rain and hailstorms that struck in the area.

Earlier, two elderly Czech tourists were killed when strong winds and water swept their travel trailer away.

Two more deaths were recorded in the town of Nea Potidea, where a tree fell on a 39-year-old Russian and his 2-year old son, who were staying in a nearby hotel to enjoy their summer vacation.

On Thursday morning, the body of a man was found in the area between the towns of Sozopolis and Nea Kallikratia. The body has not yet been identified, but reports suggest that it could be the body of a fisherman who went missing on Wednesday night in the area.

Θέλω να εκφράσω τα ειλικρινή μου συλλυπητήρια στις οικογένειες των θυμάτων της καταστροφικής κακοκαιρίας στη Χαλκιδική και να ευχηθώ γρήγορη ανάρρωση σε όσους νοσηλεύονται. Καταβάλλουμε κάθε δυνατή προσπάθεια για την αντιμετώπιση των προβλημάτων και την αποκατάσταση των ζημιών.

— Prime Minister GR (@PrimeministerGR) July 11, 2019

Greece’s new Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, expressed, in a tweet, his sincere condolences to the families of the victims of the catastrophic weather in Halkidiki and wished a speedy recovery to those who have been hospitalized.

Mitsotakis noted that the country’s authorities are doing their best to fix the widespread damages and to address the problems.

According to the Greek Ministry of Health, at least 120 people were transferred with ambulances or private cars to different hospitals of the region.

Nine people are currently hospitalized in Thessaloniki’s ”Papanikolaou” hospital, twelve are in the hospital of the town of Polygyros and five children are in Thessaloniki’s ”Gennimatas” hospital.

A woman’s health is in critical condition, who is hospitalized in the Intensive Care Unit of ”Papanikolaou” hospital.

European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid & Crisis Management, Christos Stylianides, conveyed his condolences to victims’ families on Monday, noting that the EU is ready to assist Greece after this catastrophic disaster.

Η σκέψη μου είναι με τα θύματα & όλους όσους έχουν επηρεαστεί από τα ακραία καιρικά φαινόμενα στη #Χαλκιδική #Ελλάδα 🇬🇷

Θερμά συλληπητήρια στις οικογένειες των νεκρών.

Παρακολουθούμε τις εξελίξεις & η ΕΕ 🇪🇺είναι έτοιμη να προσφέρει βοήθεια αν χρειαστεί.@EEAthina #EUprotects

— Christos Stylianides (@StylianidesEU) July 11, 2019

Many prominent figures of the country’s political leadership have already expressed their condolences to the families of the victims.

Ex-PM Alexis Tsipras noted in a thread of tweets on Thursday that ”these are moments of contemplation and reflection”, adding that ”climate change and its consequences are present”.

”Rampantly development threatens the planet and threatens our lives. The sooner we realize it, the better we’ll protect ourselves”, the former Premier noted.

Η άκρατη ανάπτυξη απειλεί τον πλανήτη, απειλεί τις ζωές μας. Όσο νωρίτερα το συνειδητοποιήσουμε τόσο καλύτερα θα προστατευτούμε. Αλλά ας έχουμε υπ’όψιν ότι απαιτούνται ριζικές τομές και όχι ημίμετρα.

— Αλέξης Τσίπρας (@atsipras) July 11, 2019

Stelios Petsas, the Greek government’s spokesperson announced on Thursday that a series of measures will be taken in order to restore damages and help those affected by the disaster.

With information from AMNA

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