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Raging forest fires swallow up 8,000 hectares in Russia’s Far East and Siberia

A federal action level state of emergency was imposed in both regions

CHITA, May 25. /TASS/. Wildfires have torn through more than 8,000 hectares in Russia’s Far East and Siberia. In the Krasnoyarsk Region alone, the total area engulfed by forest fires has surged ten-fold in the past day, the Russian Aerial Forest Protection Service reported on Thursday.

"As of midnight, the area engulfed by forest fires in the Krasnoyarsk Region increased more than ten-fold over the day reaching 4,000 hectares. In the Irkutsk Region, wildfires are raging through area of more than 800 hectares, while in Buryatia its gone to some 500 hectares, in Tuva 200 hectares have been scorched, and in the TransBaikal Region slightly more than 100 hectares were burnt. Minor wildfires are being reported from the Tomsk region (80 hectares). In all, the forest fire area in Siberia is 7,000 hectares," the service said.

The wildfire area in the Far East is beyond 1,000 hectares, including 630 hectares in the Amur Region, 470 hectares - in the Khabarovsk Region, 130 hectares - in Yakutia. Minor fires are registered in the Primorsky Region.
According to earlier reports, ten populated localities were hit by wildfires, as many as 144 dwellings burned to the ground leaving two individuals dead. The most difficult situation is in the Krasnoyarsk Region, where the blazes have destroyed 130 homes. Forty houses were destroyed by fires in the Irkutsk regions. A federal state of emergency has been declared in both regions.