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The Latest: Candlelight vigil held for victims of Greek fire

July 30, 2018
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People gather with candles outside the Greek Parliament in Athens, Monday, July 30, 2018 in memory of victims of a deadly wildfire a week ago. More than 90 people died in the fire that gutted resorts east of Athens, the deadliest Greek fire in recent history. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

RAFINA, Greece (AP) — The Latest on the aftermath of the July 23 wildfire in Greece (all times local):

10:50 p.m.

More than 500 people have gathered outside Greece’s parliament to attend a candlelight vigil for the victims of a wildfire near Athens a week ago.

The fire killed more than 90 people and gutted seaside resorts east of the capital. Divers found a body Monday while continuing to search the coastal waters where residents fled to escape the flames.

A group of people at Monday’s vigil placed candles on the ground to mark July 23, the date of the fire.

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7:10 p.m.

Coast guard divers have recovered a body offshore of an area of Greece ravaged by a deadly wildfire a week ago, as the search for possible victims continued on the coastline where hundreds people were forced to flee. 

The death toll from the blaze some 30 kilometers (18 miles) northeast of Athens remained at 91 on Monday while authorities worked to confirm if the body was related to the fire. 

The coast guard has mobilized massive resources in its search for potential victims of the fire. Coast guard patrol vessels, helicopters and a navy frigate have been scouring the sea.

They have been joined by coast guard special operations forces, which include divers able to reach depths of 120 meters and using underwater scooters to cover greater distances. 

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12:35 p.m.

Greece’s prime minister has visited the site of Greece’s deadliest wildfire in decades, a week after the blaze swept through a seaside resort north of Athens, killing dozens.

Alexis Tsipras visited Mati, the worst-affected area, early Monday morning, tweeting that he spoke with “citizens, engineers, soldiers, firefighters and volunteers.” His office released photos and the prime minister took along a camera from state-run television. No other media was alerted.

Last week, Defense Minister Panos Kammenos visited the area and was heckled by distraught survivors who criticized the response to the fire.

The blaze, whipped by gale-force winds, raced through the seaside area northeast of Athens on July 23. The vast majority of victims died in the fire itself, with some drowning while swimming out to sea fleeing the flames.

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