Wildfires devastate crops in eastern Homs countryside

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Wildfires devastated parts of the eastern Homs countryside Tuesday, burning farmland, destroying the summer crop yield and exacerbating an already dire situation for civilians. “Civilians are suffering greatly from no electricity and a lack of water,” Mohammad Hassan, a civilian from the eastern Homs countryside, told Syria Direct Tuesday. “Summer temperatures and the sun’s rays make civilians, particularly children, susceptible to meningitis,” said Hassan, citing local fears as the fires raged on for a second day. The wildfires are primarily affecting Dahiyat a-Nasiriya village, roughly 15km east of Homs city, where temperatures reaching 43 degrees Celsius (109 degrees Fahrenheit) fueled the blaze now threatening an estimated 7,000 acres of farmland, reported the pro-regime Day Press News. The initial cause of the fire remains unknown. Firefighters are working to contain the fire, Habib Watifa, the president of a-Nasiriya municipality, told Day Press News in an interview published Tuesday. Last month, wildfires burned over 1,360 acres of additional farmland in eastern Homs province.