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Russia to send two aircraft to fight wildfires in Israel

November 24, 2016, 14:37 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin for assistance in suppressing wildfires raging in that country

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A fire burns in Haifa, Israel
© AP Photo/Ariel Schalit
© AP Photo/Ariel Schalit
© AP Photo/Ariel Schalit
© AP Photo/Ariel Schalit

MOSCOW, November 24. /TASS/. The Russian Emergencies Ministry is sending two amphibious aircraft to extinguish wildfires in Israel, the ministry’s press service informed TASS on Thursday.

"Under instructions from the Russian president and in accordance with Israel’s request the Russian Emergencies Ministries is sending two Beriev B-200 amphibious aircraft and an emergency response team to extinguish wildfires in Israel," the press service said, adding that the planes will depart from the Ramenskoye airport in the Moscow region later in the day.

"The crews sent to Israel have been trained to work in difficult conditions and have extensive experience in fighting forest fires," the ministry said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin for assistance in suppressing wildfires raging in that country, the premier’s office said in a statement on Thursday.

"Netanyahu thanked President Putin for assistance," the document said. "Netanyahu held a telephone conversation with the Russian president. Vladimir Putin instantly responded to the prime minister’s request to render assistance in putting out the wildfires saying that Russia will immediately send two big Be-200 amphibious aircraft."

The Beriev Be-200 multipurpose airplane, known as one of the world’s most effective aircraft for firefighting, has a capacity of 12 tons of water and is capable of suppressing large-scale wildfires by conducting multiple water drops on a fire site.

Powerful wildfires erupted in several regions of Israel earlier this week. The authorities declared the state of emergency in some areas ordering to evacuate the population. According to Israeli TV Channel 9, the risk of wildfires will persist at least until Friday. Weather forecasts promise strong wind on Thursday, which may contribute to the spread of fire.

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