Pimicikamak evacuates because of nearby wildfires


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Thousands of members of Pimicikamak Cree Nation fled their homes overnight, owing to growing concerns about raging wildfires in the northern community.

Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak indicated between 6,000 and 7,000 people have left the Cross Lake area since an evacuation was declared late Wednesday.

“This has developed overnight,” said Philip Paul-Martin, spokesman for MKO, which advocates on behalf of Pimicikamak and 25 other northern nations. “It’s very early. We’re getting snippets of information. Right now, we’re in the early stages of coordinating a response.”

Evacuees are seeking shelter in destinations including Thompson, The Pas and Winnipeg, Paul-Martin said, adding that Ottawa’s emergency response team is involved.

Pimicikamak is located roughly 530 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

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