04:15 GMT19 February 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Over 50 forest fires have been extinguished in Russia over the past day, the Aerial Forest Protection Service, a government agency charged with the management of forests, said.

    "Over the past day, 13 August, at least 53 forest fires in an area of 61,211 hectares [151,255 acres] have been extinguished in Russia", the statement said.

    The wildfires have been devastating Siberia and several other areas in Russia since late July. A state of emergency was imposed in five regions, including the Krasnoyarsk Territory, the Republic of Buryatia, the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and the Irkutsk Region.

    The wildfires have spread across 6.7 million acres.

    Since the start of the operation, Russian Defence Ministry aviation has dropped many thousands of tonnes of water on the areas affected by the fires.

    Il-76 jets and Mi-8 helicopters have made hundreds of sorties.

    Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said last week that authorities would allocate almost 6 billion rubles ($91.9 million) for extinguishing wildfires that have swept several regions.


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