Two die fighting fires in Bolivian Amazon, says president

Source: Xinhua| 2019-09-03 07:00:42|Editor: Liu
Video PlayerClose

LA PAZ, Sept. 2 (Xinhua) -- At least two people have been killed trying to stamp out fires raging in Bolivia's Amazon rainforest, President Evo Morales said on Monday.

The fires, which have been burning for a month, have destroyed about one million hectares of forest and pastureland, he told reporters at a press conference.

The victims, a community volunteer and a firefighter, were killed battling the blaze in the central department of Cochabamba and western La Paz department.

Volunteer Jorge Hinojoza Vela, 22, died from a fall at Tunari National Park, in Sacaba, Cochabamba. He had been reported missing since Saturday and his body was found Sunday, with burns.

Firefighter Lucio Mamani also died from a fall. He plunged 300 meters into a gully in Coroico de La Paz.

Some 4,000 volunteers and firefighters have been fighting the fires for a month, with help from the international community.

Bolivia hired a Boeing 747 Supertanker to douse the flames from above and has also mobilized five helicopters and small aircraft.