Rainfall helps firefighters control southern Spain’s inferno

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MADRID (AP) — Rain has helped to bring under control a major wildfire that ravaged 7,800 hectares (19,200 acres) of southern Spain despite more than five days of intense firefighting work by land and air. But officials say that the blaze in Sierra Bermeja is not over and that work to completely extinguish the flames will be complex. The fire started late on Wednesday in various hotspots of a mountain range close to the tourist-magnet Costa del Sol. Spain’s prosecutor’s office has launched an investigation after initial evidence of arson was found. The virulence of the fire, fanned by high temperatures and strong winds, has surprised authorities, who described the blaze as the result of a warming planet and the progressive abandonment of rural areas.

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