Thousands of firefighters are still fighting devastating forest fires in Greece, Turkey and Italy.

In a massive fire in the Greek Peloponnese, five people were injured and a dozen houses were destroyed, according to a preliminary report by civil protection on Saturday.

According to this, 56 fires broke out on the peninsula within 24 hours, most of which, however, were quickly brought under control.

In Turkey, the death toll rose to six after the discovery of two bodies.

Emergency forces in southern Turkey continued their fight against the flames for the fourth day in a row.

Numerous forest fires are also blazing in the south of Italy.

Evacuations in Greece

The Greek authorities called on residents of four villages near the city of Patras to get to safety.

Another, small seaside resort was evacuated late on Saturday afternoon.

According to the fire brigade, 145 emergency services, 50 trucks and eight fire-fighting aircraft were deployed during the fire-fighting work in the region.

All hospitals in Patras and the nearby town of Egio have been alerted, and the coast guard has been put on alert to rescue swimmers affected by smoke.

The motorway and the Rio-Andirrio bridge to the Peloponnese were closed as a precaution.

Investigation into arson in Turkey

In Turkey, according to agriculture and forestry minister Bekir Pakdemirli, ten fires were still active on Saturday.

88 more are now under control.

Because many of the fires broke out in the vicinity of popular tourist spots almost at the same time, the authorities are also investigating arson.

A fire broke out again on Saturday in the seaside resort of Bodrum on the Turkish Aegean Sea, according to the state news agency Anadolu, residents and holidaymakers had been brought to safety.

The fires broke out on Wednesday and spread rapidly along the Turkish Mediterranean coast due to the heat and strong winds.

More than 300 people were injured and many villages had to be evacuated.

Meanwhile, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan thanked his Russian colleague Vladimir Putin for sending helicopters and fire-fighting planes.

The Turkish head of state has been criticized in his own country after it became known that Turkey has no fire-fighting planes despite the fires that break out every year.

The north of Italy is threatened with heavy rain, in the south it is burning

The Italian civil protection authority issued new warnings for many parts of the Mediterranean country on Saturday evening.

For individual areas of northern Italian Lombardy, the highest red warning level applies, according to a report by the civil protection authority.

This week, violent storms had led to floods and landslides in the area around Lake Como.

In the village of Laglio, a celebrity unexpectedly turned up to pledge his help: US actor George Clooney.

The mayors and local authorities have been informed, said the head of the civil protection authority, Fabrizio Curcio, at a press conference in Rome that was called at short notice on Saturday evening.

For other parts of northern Italy, increased severe weather warning levels apply, such as in northern Tuscany and Veneto.

In the south of the country, fires raged, especially on the holiday island of Sicily around the city of Catania.

The fires are fueled by the persistent heat, drought and strong winds.

Some investigators also attribute this to arson.

Agriculture, animals and holiday resorts were affected.

Curcio spoke of a "serious" and "disastrous" situation.

The regional president of Sicily, Nello Musumeci, called for further support from the government in the fight against the flames.

According to Curcio, the civil protection authority is already in action in Sicily with twelve fire-fighting aircraft from the national fleet.

Experts were working on sending more fire brigade troops to Sicily.

This year, the regions had already requested fire-fighting planes almost 560 times during the forest fire season.

In the three previous years there were significantly fewer in the same period.

Only in 2017, a complicated year of forest fires, there were almost 800 inquiries.

More fires are blazing in the south of mainland Italy.

The island of Sardinia was also recently badly affected by bushfires.