These Eerie Photos Show A World Heritage Site At The Mercy Of Nature

04/14/2014 12:06 pm ET | Updated Apr 14, 2014

Deadly forest fires tore through the Chilean city Valparaiso this weekend, killing at least 12 people and forcing thousands to flee. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Valparaiso's colorful center is nestled between steep hills packed with homes. The fast-moving blaze -- which is the worst in the city's history -- has already destroyed 2,000 houses and is now threatening the town's historic port.

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View of Valparaiso on April 13, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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A young man reacts after fires kicked up again in Valparaiso, Chile, on April 13, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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A helicopter works to extinguish fires in Valparaiso, Chile, on April 13, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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A view of the forest fire in Valparaiso, Chile, on April 13, 2014. (Azzopardi/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

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Firefighters work in Valparaiso, Chile, on April 13, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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Locals flee from their homes in Valparaiso, Chile on April 13, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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A man clears debris from his destroyed home after a large forest fire reached urban areas in Valparaiso, Chile, April 13, 2014. (AP Photo/ Luis Hidalgo)

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A man looks at the charred remains of homes after a large forest fire reached urban areas in Valparaiso, Chile, April 13, 2014. (AP Photo/ Luis Hidalgo)

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People watch as a forest fire rages towards urban areas in the city of Valparaiso, Chile, April 13, 2014. (AP Photo/ Luis Hidalgo)

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Sparks fly carried by the wind as a large forest fire reaches urban areas in Valparaiso, Chile, April 13, 2014. (AP Photo/ Luis Hidalgo)

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A helicopter empties a bucket of water to fight a fire in Valparaiso, Chile, on April 14, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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Soldiers work in an area of Valparaiso, Chile, affected by a huge fire, on April 14, 2014. (MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

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