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Firefighters in Bolivia lose hope of taming blazes as burned area doubles

Updated : 2019-09-22 17:51:54

Bolivian volunteer firefighters, exhausted from battling blazes sweeping rapidly across the country's lowlands, are starting to lose hope and retreat from the front lines of some infernos in the drought-stricken region.The fires this year are Bolivia's worst in at least two decades, with the size of burned land across the country nearly doubling in under three weeks, destroying swaths of biodiverse forest and ranches and farms that sustain thousands of people.

A resident looks on in Santa Monica community in Concepcion, Bolivia. The sign reads,
A resident looks on in Santa Monica community in Concepcion, Bolivia. The sign reads, "Disaster zone. Santa Monica, Km. 15". REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Wildfires are seen in Santa Monica near Concepcion, Bolivia. REUTERS/David Mercado
Wildfires are seen in Santa Monica near Concepcion, Bolivia. REUTERS/David Mercado
Carlos Leige, a resident, fights wildfires in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Carlos Leige, a resident, fights wildfires in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Wildfires are pictured in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Wildfires are pictured in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
A man walks next to wildfires in Santa Monica near Concepcion. REUTERS/David Mercado
A man walks next to wildfires in Santa Monica near Concepcion. REUTERS/David Mercado
A charred trunk is pictured in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
A charred trunk is pictured in Santa Monica community near Concepcion. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Residents draw water from a lagoon to fill plastic water cans as they prepare to fight wildfires. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Residents draw water from a lagoon to fill plastic water cans as they prepare to fight wildfires. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
A firefighter of Argentina's army works to control a fire near Santa Monica community. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
A firefighter of Argentina's army works to control a fire near Santa Monica community. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
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