Ancient Olympia Escapes Fire Damage

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ANCIENT OLYMPIA, Greece, Aug. 27 -- Firefighters backed by aircraft dropped water and foam on the birthplace of the ancient Olympics on Sunday to stop wildfires from burning the 2,800-year-old ruins, one of the most revered sites of antiquity.

But the fires, which have been burning for three days, obliterated vast swaths of the country, and the death toll rose to 60. New fires broke out faster than others could be brought under control. Desperate residents appealed through television stations for help from a firefighting service already stretched to the limit, and many blamed authorities for leaving them defenseless.

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