An estimated 700 people have already been evacuated after blaze took hold on parched countryside

A huge bushfire that has been raging in the parched New Zealand countryside for four days has forced hundreds of residents to be evacuated from their homes and prompted fears that climate change has caused the nation to become “more flammable”.

Firefighters have been working for most of the week to put out fires covering more than 2,000 hectares (5,000 acres) around Nelson on the northern tip of the South Island of New Zealand.

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Read More Rare New Zealand bushfire, burning for days, threatens town of 3,000

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