EDEN: A global appeal to help Australian firefighters tackling catastrophic bushfires raised almost 25 million Australian dollars on Sunday. Comedian Celeste Barber used her international social media fame to launch a Facebook fundraiser for firefighters that almost reached its 25 million Australian dollars ($17 million) target in just two days with donations from all over the globe.

American pop star Pink said she would donate $500,000 to the firefighters, a donation matched by Australian actress Nicole Kidman. World number one Ash Barty pledged to handover all her winnings from this week’s Brisbane International tennis tournament — potentially $250,000 — to the Red Cross.

Queen Elizabeth II on Sunday said she was “deeply saddened” by the fires, and thanked the emergency services “who put their own lives in danger” to help communities.

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