ATHENS, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) -- European Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic on Wednesday called for closer cooperation beyond borders to address challenges like the wildfires in Greece in the wake of the country's worst heat wave in decades.
"There is a time for bold action, because climate change will lead to more challenges like this one," he said during a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
The Greek leader appreciated the assistance from the European Union, the RescEU mechanism and all the European countries in combating the wildfires which decimated over 100,000 hectares of forests and farmland across the country earlier this month, according to Greek national broadcaster ERT.
"We had 23 countries present in Greece during this unprecedented crisis, and it was a real show of solidarity," he added.
Lenarcic commended the solidarity demonstrated by other EU member states, as well as Greece's contribution to build a stronger EU Civil Protection mechanism while visiting a RescEU stockpile of medical items hosted by Greece.
"Eleven member states of the European Union responded through our Union Civil Protection Mechanism to the Greek request for assistance to deal with these extraordinarily challenging wildfires," he told ERT.
Member states provided some 1,000 firefighters and this has been the largest ever firefighting operation coordinated through the Union's Civil Protection Mechanism, he said.
Since 2014, Greece has asked for assistance from the EU's Civil Protection Mechanism 10 times, while it has offered its assistance 22 times when other member states asked for help, he said. Enditem