Homes evacuated in Turkey as fire rages near southern town

Authorities have evacuated homes in southern Turkey as a wildfire fanned by strong winds raged through a forest area near the Mediterranean coastal town of Manavgat

ANKARA, Turkey -- Authorities evacuated homes in southern Turkey on Wednesday as a wildfire fanned by strong winds raged through a forest near the Mediterranean coastal town of Manavgat.

Security forces helped move residents of four neighborhoods out of the fire's path as firefighters worked to control the blaze, Manavgat district governor Mustafa Yigit told the state-run Anadolu Agency.

He denied earlier media reports that patients at a hospital in Manavgat were being transferred to another location, but said hospitals in the area were placed on alert.

Tourist resorts in the region weren't affected, Yigit added. The town is in Turkey's Antalya province, which is known for its beach resorts.

The government's Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency, or AFAD, said around 30 people were “affected” by the fire, but didn't elaborate.

It wasn't immediately clear what caused the fire. Wildfires are common in Turkey’s Mediterranean and Aegean regions during the arid summer months, although some forest fires have been blamed on arson.

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