Fire breaks out on Belgian-German border, affecting over 170 hectares

A wildfire broke out Monday evening in the Fagnes region of Belgium with 170 hectares of vegetation under threat, according to the fire brigade on the scene.

The blaze has not yet been brought under control.

A helicopter was deployed to reach the most difficult areas to access by land.

According to the 'Eaux et Forêts' department, the flames were caused by human activity, as there were no natural phenomena such as thunderstorms or lightning to explain the outbreak of flames in this difficult-to-access area.

Whether the fire was deliberate or the result of negligence remains to be seen.

More firefighting aircraft for Europe

Expecting another intense summer of wildfires, the European Commission announced that 28 planes and helicopters will be made available as part of the EU rescue firefighting air fleet to counter wild forest fires

In addition to the 24 firefighting aeroplanes and four helicopters, ground firefighting teams including more than 440 firefighters will be prepositioned in France, Greece and Portugal.

Speaking at the 10th anniversary of the Emergency Response Coordination Centre (ERCC), EU Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic also said the EU is establishing a new wildfires support team that will be dedicated to tackling wildfires across Europe and beyond.