Hundreds protest in Athens as foreign firefighters fly in to help stricken Greeks.
“We are humiliated by the inability of the government to save the lives of our fellow citizens”
George Papandreou, Socialist leader
“They let Greece burn,” said a message sent by text message and e-mail calling Greeks to gather in front of the parliament building at 7pm (1600 GMT).
In the Makistos village, where seven people died, one resident said: “I came barefoot from Albania for a better life, but now I’m back where I started. I lost my house, my animals, my mother-in-law.”
The government said it budgeted nearly one-third of a billion euros for the immediate relief operation, but the foreign ministry said the final cost of the damage is likely to be much higher.
Karolos Papoulias, the Greek president, has called the fires “a national catastrophe”, but urged political parties to show “maturity” as they traded insults and blame over the handling of the firefighting effort ahead of elections.