By Daniel Bellamy with AFP, AP
Forest fires have broken out in Russia’s Chelyabinsk region near Kazakhstan and in north-eastern Siberia.
The Ministry of Emergency Situations said it has deployed aircraft and a helicopter to fight the fires, as well as 240 personnel to Chelyabinsk where two large villages have been evacuated.
Wildfires are also ravaging northeastern Siberia where temperatures have been abnormally high.
Russia’s coldest inhabited region, Yakutia, is now in the third year of unusually intense fires and around 300 are now burning.
In fact, peat fires had continued to burn throughout last winter in Yakutia, even when the temperature plummeted to minus 50 degrees Centigrade.