The Star Malaysia

Birth of ‘miracle’ goat defies flames of Turkish wildfire


MANAVGAT (Turkey): When a wildfire spread to his village, farmer Sercan Bayat shouted at his cows to run from the flames and prayed for his own death rather than witness his animals perish.

Seeing his animals threatened by the inferno – a moment he captured on video – was the most difficult moment in 30-year-old Bayat’s life.

Though he lost eight of his livestock in the blaze, he later found new life in the shape of a newborn goat kid lying helpless, but still breathing, after its mother had died in the fire.

“Two or three hours after the flames were put out, I saw this one on the ground. He is our baby goat now. We called him Miracle,” Bayat said.

“We found another goat amidst the wildfire. She has a baby. There you go. Miracle number two,” Bayat added, as he kissed the baby goats.

He said that although his farm in Manavgat in southern Turkey is severely damaged and he lost some of his animals, he is now “over the moon” at the kids’ survival.

Meanwhile more people have been forced to flee their homes yesterday as pressure on the government grew over its response to the deadly forest fires.

Turkey has suffered the worst fires in at least a decade, official data show, with nearly 95,000ha burned so far this year, compared with an average of 13,516ha at this point in the year between 2008 and 2020.

Since the fires broke out on Wednesday, six people have died and more than 330 have received medical treatment.

A neighbourh­ood in the tourist city of Bodrum was evacuated, CNN Turk broadcaste­r reported, as flames were fanned by strong winds from Milas district nearby.

Unable to leave by road, 540 residents were taken to hotels by boats, the channel said.

There were more evacuation­s in the village of Sirtkoy in Antalya province, NTV broadcaste­r reported, with images of grey smoke clouds enveloping homes. — Agencies

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