Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov should have been in the capital while its residents were suffocating from toxic smog instead of enjoying his summer vacation, a Kremlin source said on Tuesday.
"During the situation that occurred in the city it was very important that authorities be at the scene and personally take all necessary measures in rendering help to residents and guests," the source said.
Scorching heat since mid-June has caused peat bogs fires nearby Moscow creating toxic smog throughout the capital. The smog pushed pollution levels to new highs on Saturday threatening people's health.
The 2010 deadly summer has claimed 700 lives daily, the head of the Moscow healthcare department, Andrei Seltsovsky, said on Monday.
Moscow authorities have said, however, the situation had been far from critical.
Earlier a Moscow city spokesman, Sergei Tsoi, said there were no reasons for Luzhkov, 73, to return from his three-week vacation where he was undergoing therapy after a sports injury.
Luzhkov has already returned to the smoky capital after sparking disputes and sharp criticism in Russian media.
MOSCOW, August 10 (RIA Novosti)