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Last Updated: Thursday, 16 September, 2004, 23:16 GMT 00:16 UK
Wildfires burn swathes of Bolivia
Map of Bolivia
Hundreds of wildfires in Bolivia have created a thick haze of smoke and prompted two regions to declare a state of emergency.

Hospitals have been overwhelmed by people requiring treatment for difficulties with breathing and sight.

Thousands of hectares of land have been destroyed, forcing many peasant farmers from their homes.

The fire was started by farmers who burned forest to prepare for the sowing season.

The blaze is being spread by high winds and hot weather.

Some reports say a baby and an elderly person died of asphyxiation in Santa Cruz province, but local officials have denied the deaths resulted from environmental contamination.




SEE ALSO:
Bolivian peasants end oil siege
20 Aug 04  |  Americas
Bolivia signs big gas export deal
04 Aug 04  |  Americas
Country profile: Bolivia
06 May 04  |  Country profiles



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