Fire destroys historic Byzantine monastery in Central Greece

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A fire has destroyed a section of the Byzantine Monastery of Panagia Varnakova in Fokida, central Greece, after breaking out after 11pm on Sunday.

According to the local fire service, the fire began on the roof of the monastery and quickly spread to its church, destroying an ancient icon of the Panagia and some precious relics.

A fire has destroyed a section of the Byzantine Monastery of Panagia Varnakova in Fokida, central Greece. Source: Orthodoxia.info.

Firefighters evacuated the building and no injuries have been reported so far. The section of the monastery that was burned by the fire dates back to the 11th century.

The Metropolitan Bishop of Fokida, Theoktistos, has praised the excellent work of the firefighters.

”We are grateful to firefighters for they came immediately and deterred the worse situations which could have taken place,” Bishop Theoktistos said.

Mayor of Dorida, Giorgos Kapetsonis, also added that the swift intervention of the firefighters stopped the fire before it spread to the surrounding forest.

The monastery has been impacted by fire before in January 2017, when flames destroyed several rooms, including the library.

The monastery was built in 1077 and is situated on Mount Vardoussia some 25km northeast of Nafpaktos.

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