Greek officials said Monday the death toll increased to 91 with 25 people missing a week after Greece’s worst forest fires in more than a decade.
Prior to the latest announcement the number of dead had stood at 86, and authorities had not yet released an estimate for those missing. Officials said 12 others are hospitalized in grave condition.
The death toll could still rise, as the fires destroyed more than 500 homes — some of which have not been inspected.
As dozens remain unaccounted for, Greek citizens have created a web page with pictures of relatives in hopes of identifying them; however, officials have struggled to identify victims due to severity of their burns.
Among the recently-declared casualties were nine-year-old twin sisters Sophia and Vassiliki Philippopoulou, who died embracing with their grandparents after trying to escape the blaze in the coastal town of Mati.
Officials said the four were among 26 bodies found huddled together nearby a cliff edge, where they had been trapped after attempting to flee the fires, the New York Post reported.
A family relative wrote in a Facebook post Friday confirming the news.
“The epilogue has been written. All four were found hugging each other. Not even death could tear them apart.”
The twins had been missing for days after the devastating Attica fires, garnering international media attention when their father Yiannis said he saw them in a Skai News video clip of survivors on a fishing boat.
The father made an appeal on television for anyone with information to contact him; however, the children who he had thought to be his own turned out to belong to another survivor, who spoke out to claim them.
Similar to the 26 who perished nearby the cliff edge, hundreds of other Mati residents tried saving themselves by fleeing to the water.
Most of the victims were killed in the fires, but some also drowned while trying to swim away from the flames.
The Greek Coast Guard rescued more than 700 people in the sea, and on Sunday dozens of volunteer divers searched the Mati waters for bodies of other possible victims.
The fires mark the second deadliest wildfire in the 21st century behind the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires in Australia that left 180 dead.
The fires were also Greece’s worst incident since 2007, when blazes throughout the Peloponnese peninsula killed 84.
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