Macron announces France is sending 100 firefighters to Quebec
France will be sending firefighters to aid Quebec as the province continues to battle massive forest fires.
French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted Sunday that France is “united” in the desire to help.
“A hundred of our firefighters are preparing to fight the flames alongside their Quebec comrades. Experts are also mobilized,” he tweeted in French. “Canadian friends, reinforcements are coming.”
“Merci cousins!” Quebec Premier Francois Legault tweeted in response.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also thanked the French president on behalf of Canadians, tweeting in French,"Our two countries are the closest friends and strongest partners, and this relationship is more important than ever."
There are currently 141 forest fires burning in Quebec, with the military gearing up to help fight the fires alongside fire crews. Quebec forest fire prevention organization SOPFEU has 475 firefighters tackling the blazes.
More than 10,000 people have been forced from their homes so far due to evacuations in the Abitibi-Temiscamingue region, which borders Ontario, as well as the North Shore community of Sept-Iles and its outskirts, and residents in Lebel-sur-Quevillon.
Although forest fires are not uncommon in the province at this time of year, this is a significantly more severe start to fire season than usual, with federal Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair calling the situation “unprecedented” on Thursday.
Canada has agreements to share firefighters with the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and Costa Rica.
Hundreds and other experts had arrived to Canada from the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to help with forest fires. Most have been deployed to Alberta thus far.
Alberta and Nova Scotia have also suffered massive forest fires recently. The fires in Nova Scotia are largely contained as of Sunday, and a state of emergency that Alberta has been under since early May is expiring Sunday.