Greece says its offer to help Turkey extinguish fires still in place despite rejection

Greece has said that its offer to help Turkey extinguish fires is still in place. According to Greek officials, Turkey thanked Athens for its offer, the BBC's Turkish service reported.

Duvar English 

Greek authorities have said that Athens' offer to help Turkey in tackling the fires in the country is still in place despite Turkey's rejection.

According to Greek authorities, Ankara thanked Greece for its offer but went on to reject, the BBC's Turkish service reported. 

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias last week called his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu to offer condolences and express his country’s readiness in assisting Turkey in its fight against the forest fires that have engulfed the southern and western coasts. 

“I expressed my sincere condolences over loss of lives caused by the wildfires, including in the Turkish FM’s home region of Antalya. I also expressed Greece’s readiness to provide assistance if requested,” Dendias also said in a Twitter statement.

Greece itself is also battling fires, with firefighters trying to contain a wildfire burning in the west of the country that destroyed houses and left 15 citizens in hospital with breathing problems, authorities said. Temperatures have been high in much of the country in recent days and are expected to reach 44 degrees Celsius on Aug. 2 and 3. 

Separately, Israel Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lior Haiat has told Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency that reports of Ankara denying Israel's help in tackling the flames were not true. 

Haiat said that Israeli authorities spoke to Turkish officials right after the fires erupted last week and that Israel is ready to assist Ankara if needed.