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Yakutia forest fires almost completely extinguished — deputy emergencies minister

To date, wildfires have scorched over seven million hectares

MOSCOW, August 26. /TASS/. The battle against wildfires in Yakutia is nearing its completion, First Russian Deputy Emergencies Minister Alexander Chupriyan said at a news conference at TASS on Thursday.

"Two days ago I came back from a regular working trip, as the president set a task of extinguishing the fires in Yakutia. This task has been almost completed," he said.

Yakutia is one of the most fire-hazardous regions in Russia. People in Yakutia are banned from visiting forests and a regional emergency has been in effect since July 1. On August 13, an inter-regional emergency was declared in regard to forests. To date, wildfires have scorched over seven million hectares. In the village of Byas-Kyuel in the Gorny area, around which two fires were raging, strong winds blew up the blaze across the fire line, forcing an evacuation on August 7. While no one was hurt, six apartment buildings (15 apartments) and 26 private houses were destroyed in the fire.

According to the Aerial Forest Protection Service, as of Thursday morning, 31 forest fires have engulfed an area of 520,708 hectares in Yakutia.