Portugal will send a 140-strong joint task force to help fight forest fires in Canada on Wednesday, the National Authority for Emergencies and Civil Protection (ANEPC) announced today.
In a press release, ANEPC said that the Joint Task Force (FOCON), whose mission is coordinated by the National Authority for Emergencies and Civil Protection, will depart Wednesday morning from Lisbon airport on a commercial flight and will intervene in the province of Quebec.
According to ANEPC, the force includes elements from the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (Autoridade Nacional de Emergência e Proteção Civil), ANEPC’s Special Civil Protection Force (FEPC), the Emergency Protection and Rescue Unit (UEPS) of the National Republican Guard (GNR), the Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forests (ICNF), firefighters from the fire departments of the Central Region and the Autonomous Region of Madeira, and the National Institute for Medical Emergencies (INEM), for a total of 140 agents.
This Portuguese force is being sent to Canada as part of the European Union’s (EU) civil protection mechanism, alongside the 97-strong Spanish contingent.
Canada is ravaged by a wave of major forest fires.