PCP accuses Government of not asking the EU for assistance to support damages from the Castro Marim fire

Populations affected by the August fire continue to wait for support from the Portuguese State

Photos: Rúben Bento | Sul Informação (File)

PCP MEP João Pimenta Lopes questioned the European Commission to find out if the Portuguese State had triggered the mobilization of community funds with a view to providing support to populations affected by the Castro Marim fire.

According to the PCP, European Commissioner Elisa Ferreira informed, in response to the MEP, that "to date, the Commission has not yet received any request from Portugal for assistance from the European Union Solidarity Fund for the damage caused by the forest fires'.

The «absence of any initiative» in this regard on the part of the Portuguese Government «contrasts with the promises made last summer to support the affected populations».

«A reality that is also confirmed by the fact that many of those who lost property in that fire are still waiting for any support from the State», he points out.

The PCP draws attention that «this fire saw the destruction of thousands of hectares of woods and forests, housing, infrastructure and equipment».

This is a situation that, «given the absence of a true policy for the prevention of forest fires, inseparable from greater public investment, support for the promotion of agricultural activity, combating the desertification of territories and the promotion of another forest management system, if has become a summer routine in the Algarve mountains».

For the communists, «it is incomprehensible that the Portuguese State does not mobilize all the resources that are available, including community funds, to support the populations» and they claim, «not only another policy for the forest and the rural world, but also immediate measures of support to those who were victims of this fire".