Authorities on Sunday announced the arrest of a 33-year-old Turkish man who allegedly admitted to setting fires three times this month atop Mt. Egaleo (Aigaleo), a mostly brush-covered low peak overlooking the greater Athens area from the west.

Police sources later said the foreign national does not have an asylum request card, but instead has filed the necessary paperwork. No decision has been made on his asylum request.

As with thousands of third country nationals that illegally enter Greek territory from neighboring Turkey, the suspect reportedly entered Greece roughly two months from the Evros border prefecture.

He had previously been detained by police in the upscale Psychiko district of Athens after being detected near the Israeli embassy. He was released at the time as no wrongdoing was ascertained.

Another two attempts to start a wildfire on Mt. Egaleo were reported on May 14 and 15. The specific peak has some cultivated areas, but is mostly brush, with clusters of trees.
The suspect is due to face a local prosecutor on Monday.
In a latter post on his X (Twitter) account, Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Minister Vassilis Kikilias stressed that “…Three times this month there were fires on Mt. Egaleo. In all three occasions, fire brigade units prevented the flames from spreading. Today however, the arsonist, a Turkish national, was arrested and confessed to his criminal actions. He will be brought to justice under the new law. As we have said many times: We’ll be merciless with arsonists.”