Aug. 7 (UPI) — Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsirpas announced thousands of illegal buildings will be demolished after the country’s deadliest wildfire.
Tsirpas said 3,200 buildings in the Attica region will be demolished immediately, after authorities said unlicensed construction hampered attempts to escape areas affected by the fire in Mati last month, which killed 91 people.
“Whatever represents a danger will be torn down,” Tsirpas said. “It is our duty to our dead, but more so towards the living.”
Authorities said there were dozens of “afthereta” or “arbitrary” buildings in Mati, which blocked access to the coast during the fire.
Such structures are initially constructed without permission from the government, before often being licensed in amnesties.
Tsirpas didn’t provide an exact timetable for when the process would be complete, but said the government would also focus on illegal fences on private properties.
“The chaos of unchecked construction that threatens human lives is no longer acceptable,” he said.