Hundreds of Czech tourists among those evacuated from Rhodes

The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs will send a team to assist Czech tourists evacuating the Greek island, while travel agencies have cancelled trips. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 23.07.2023 14:49:00 (updated on 24.07.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs will send two members of a specialized consular team to Greece to assist Czech tourists in the ongoing evacuation on Rhodes island, as wildfires continue to pose a significant threat.

Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský made the announcement on Twitter following discussions with representatives from various travel Czech agencies.

The Foreign Ministry estimates that there are approximately 4,000-5,000 Czech tourists currently in Rhodes. Fortunately, most of them are not in immediate danger, residing in areas unaffected by the wildfires. However, hundreds of Czechs have had to be evacuated from affected regions.

"I informed the prime minister and other cabinet members about the situation, and I am in contact with our German colleagues regarding the possible evacuation of Czech citizens," Lipavský tweeted.

In response to the escalating situation, multiple Czech travel agencies have cancelled trips to fire-affected areas on Rhodes. Those scheduled to fly to the island were offered the option of free cancellation or the opportunity to switch to an alternative holiday destination.

Petr Kostka, representing Exim Tours, confirmed that some of those who have had to evacuate from Rhodes have already returned to Czechia.

While the local airport in Rhodes remains operational, Martin Smolek from the Czech Foreign Ministry noted that there are transportation challenges to the airport due to the wildfire's impact.

Czech tourists currently in Rhodes are urged to utilize the emergency line provided by the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Athens, which operates round-the-clock.

As reported by AFP News Agency, an estimated 30,000 tourists and locals in the southeastern part of the island were forced to flee the area due to intense wildfires on Saturday. Local authorities disclosed that around 19,000 people were successfully evacuated from the fire-stricken zones.

Given unpredictable weather conditions, Greek firefighters have issued warnings that the situation may worsen in the immediate future due to high winds. The Czech government, in close coordination with international partners, is actively monitoring the situation and taking all necessary measures to ensure the safety and well-being of its citizens abroad.

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