The worst forest fires in the country since 2019. This is how experts describe the fires raging in the eastern and northern parts of the Amazon in Bolivia.

The smoke from the fires is affecting the air quality in the cities of Santa Cruz and La Paz, and many farmers and indigenous people testify to harsh conditions.

The country's president, Luis Arce, notes that many are struggling hard.

"So far, we have extinguished 134 forest fires, mobilized 5,612 firefighters and we are making extreme efforts to fight the fires on land, in the air and on rivers," the president said.

Get help with extinguishing work

He has appealed for international help, which he has now received, with France sending around 40 firefighters and forest fire specialists to assist in extinguishing the fire.

"The forest fires in Bolivia are causing extensive damage and environmental loss. The European Union is ready to help beyond its borders, and I would like to thank France warmly for deploying these teams, which will provide crucial assistance. Just like in 2019, Bolivia can once again count on our support," said Janez Lenarčič, EU Commissioner for Crisis Management.

On Wednesday, up to 70 firefighters from Venezuela joined to participate in extinguishing the fire at La Paz.

The fires in Bolivia have damaged thousands of hectares of forests, crops and pastures and affected several protected natural parks.

"Taking care of our wildlife, which is threatened by fires, is also a priority," said President Luis Arce.

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Here, the indigenous firefighter fights the fires – almost completely without equipment. Photo: Reuters