Death toll rises to 40 as Russians battle fires

Death toll rises to 40 as Russians battle fires

Russian firefighters continued to battle thousands of forest and peat fires on Monday as the death toll climbed in the worst natural disaster the country has seen in decades, dpa reported.

   Hundreds of thousands were in action battling the 7,000 fires of varying size burning across 500,000 hectares of the vast nation, said the head of national emergency centre, Vladimir Stepanov.

   Official counts showed the death toll had climbed to 40, while hundreds of people have been injured and thousands rendered homeless as entire villages were burned to the ground.

   On Monday, rescue workers recovered five bodies from the ruins of a house which burned down in the worst-hit region of Nizhny Novgorod. In Lenkovo, a village near Moscow, two children were burned to death.

   In both Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod, 400 kilometres east of the capital, Russian soldiers had begun to lay down water pipelines to help in the battle against the fires.

   State radio reported that some of the blazes were just 10 kilometres away from Moscow, while others were encroaching on Voronesh, a city of 840,000 some 500 kilometres to the south.

   Extra relief workers were drafted into the Zarow region of Nizhny Novgorod to provide added protection for a nuclear research centre.

   Parts of the capital was shrouded in haze, while clouds of black smoke from the fires in the European part of Russia were clearly visible on satellite photos.

President Dmitry Medvedev declared a state of emergency in seven regions hit by the wildfires, giving local authorities greater powers to deal with the disaster.

   Medvedev said he was beefing up the 2,000 soldiers helping the around 240,000 civil defence workers. Emergency Situations Minister Sergej Shoigu said eight water-dropping planes would be deployed.

   The extreme heat and dry spell - the worst in more than 130 years - is believed to have triggered the initial outbreak last week, but arsonists have been blamed for some of the more recent blazes.

   Authorities reported the first arrests Monday of arsonists and looters. In one case a group of men was detained for stealing building material from an abandoned village.

   Others face prosecution for submitting multiple claims for one-off compensation payments to people who have lost their possessions.

   The drought had already destroyed much of the summer harvest and now the flames have added to the damage, which experts estimate at billions of roubles.

   Prime Minister Vladimir Putin held an emergency meeting in Moscow with the governors of the regions worst affected, urging them to come up with a reconstruction plan.

   Officials have been accused of negligence in dealing with the disaster and failing to build fire-protection ditches in time.

   "It'll take at least five years before the nature can regenerate itself 50 per cent," one forestry expert told the news agency Interfax, saying he was "staggered" at how much land had been destroyed.

   Meteorologists were warning that no relief was in sight, with temperatures in Moscow expected to go beyond 40 degrees Celsius by the end of the week.

Political parties in Armenia urge to oust active PM and president
Political parties in Armenia urge to oust active PM and president
First Armenian president reveals reasons for country’s defeat in Karabakh war
First Armenian president reveals reasons for country’s defeat in Karabakh war
No provocative actions against Russian peacekeepers noted in Karabakh - MoD
No provocative actions against Russian peacekeepers noted in Karabakh - MoD
Loading Bars
UNICEF Representative in Georgia receives coronavirus vaccine
Chinese city raises COVID-19 alert level in 4 neighborhoods
Iran receives 2nd delivery of Covid-19 vaccines through COVAX Facility
Belgian companies keep on being active on Azerbaijani market – ambassador
Kazakhstan reports over 2,000 new COVID-19 cases
Turkey registers 10,512 new COVID-19 cases
G7 urged to donate 'emergency' supplies to vaccine-sharing scheme
Brazil reports 1,036 more COVID-19 deaths
Blinken discusses Gaza in calls with Qatari, Egyptian, Saudi foreign ministers
Argentina reports 270 more deaths from COVID-19
About 1,000 people evacuated due to wildfire near Los Angeles
Palestinians resume rocket attacks on southern Israel - army
Saudi Arabia to lift travel ban on citizens from May 17
Number of COVID-2019 cases across globe up by over 658,000 in past day, WHO reports
Two dead, dozens hurt in Israeli synagogue accident
Azerbaijan launches project to develop women's entrepreneurship
Bitcoin rises 5.6% to $49,337.72
UK records another 1,926 coronavirus cases, 4 deaths
Tourism Administration to participate in Dubai Tourism Exhibition
Iran to vaccinate 14m citizens against COVID-19 by end of June: Minister
Uzbekistan and Tajikistan discuss the development of trade and economic ties
Value of Turkish cars imported by China surges
Azerbaijan using combat aircraft units in military exercises (VIDEO)
Azerbaijani grabs gold at 2021 US Judo Senior National Championships (PHOTO)
Ankara Commission investigating crimes committed during Karabakh war holds first meeting (PHOTO)
Tank units of Azerbaijani Armed Forces perform tasks within scheduled exercises (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan’s Diamond Motors company names winner of tender for purchase of vehicles
Iran kicks off operation to develop Kong fishing port in Hormozgan Province
Political parties in Armenia urge to oust active PM and president
Iran's Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on May 17
MP explains Iran's benefits of selling oil products instead of crude
Slovenian Port of Koper could serve as fastest way and entry point for Georgian goods entering EU
Rising commodity prices create preconditions for potential strengthening of currencies in CIS - expert
Azerbaijan names number of sold cars in 1Q2021
Azerbaijan discloses volume of non-oil products exported to Turkey
Azerbaijani Army's missile, artillery units heading for exercise areas (VIDEO)
Bahar Azadi gold coin price rising in Iran
National Iranian Drilling Company starts drilling operations on Siyah Makan oil field
French investment bank to assist in transformation of state-owned enterprises in Uzbekistan
Khazar consortium opens tender for purchase of office equipment in Turkmenistan
Udi people always feel attention of Azerbaijani president, first lady - head of Albanian-Udi Christian community
Azerbaijan's economy shows positive tendencies in March 2021, says WB
Travel to Saudi Arabia to resume Monday after year of restrictions
Royal Caribbean cancels new cruise line from Israel over unrest
Cargo movements in Iran’s Amirabad port shrink
Ranking of best-selling cars in global market for 1Q2021 announced
Bolivia receives another batch of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine
Turkmen Communications opens tender for supply of equipment
Iran exporters seek stable foreign currency rate
Azerbaijan discloses date of next plenary parliamentary session
Personnel, military equipment of Azerbaijani Armed Forces sent to exercise area (PHOTO)
First Armenian president reveals reasons for country’s defeat in Karabakh war
Iran’s NIOC, POMC to sign contract on development of Farzad B gas field
Activities in Iran’s Noshahr port intensify
Greece talks latest trade data with Turkmenistan
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens for May 16
Kazakhstan boosts trade with Poland
Azerbaijan confirms 472 more COVID-19 cases, 1,122 recoveries
Azerbaijani manat's exchange rate remains stable - WB
Kazakhstan unveils its trade structure with EAEU countries for 1Q2021
Greece exploring ways to further diversify bilateral trade with Turkmenistan
Iran's Ministry of ICT to provide free internet for presidential candidates
Iran lifts steel ingots export ban
Azerbaijan, Germany implementing joint agricultural projects
Iran declares amount of loans issued in Fars Province
Detailed look at Turkmenistan's development of agriculture sector (2020 - May 2021)
Tourism potential of Azerbaijan's liberated Shusha at int'l exhibition in Dubai (PHOTO)
Ports and Maritime Organization of Iran seeks tax exemption for Chabahar port
Azerbaijan discloses insurance fee for rice fields
Abu Dhabi shares at record high, shrugging off Israel-Palestine tension
Israel's import of Turkish chemicals spikes in value
SOCAR Ukraine temporarily suspends premium fuel sales
Britain to hold meeting to encourage global COVID vaccine take-up
Azerbaijani agrarian agency signs tender to attract judicial services
Purchasing of rapeseed from farmers in Iran continues
CPI up 0.3% in April, well below expectations
Uzbekneftegaz shares data on shipment of sulfur products
Russia’s COVID-19 spread rate surpasses 1 for eight days in a row
Disney World and other U.S. theme parks update mask rules
Troops of Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan garrison to launch new command-staff exercises
Share of non-performing loans in Georgia doubles
EU allocates financial aid for programs in support of Georgian private sector
Government Trading Corporation of Iran unveils volume of wheat purchased from farmers
Iran's free trade zones require private sector investments - President Rouhani
Volume of cargo loaded, unloaded in Iran’s Anzali port decreases
Azerbaijani parliamentary delegation leaves for visit to Italy
Bitcoin rises 5.6% to $49,337.72
Most temples belonging to Udi people are either in ruined or dilapidated condition. Therefore, we will restore them too - President Aliyev
Iran's launches supercomputer
Proxy advisor ISS recommends votes for Chevron CEO, directors
WB talks growth of lending to Azerbaijan's economy
Saudi Arabia's national airline to resume flights to Georgia
Uzbek commodity exchange notes decrease in prices for cotton seeds
Udi people have great historical heritage - President Aliyev
Georgian FM to pay official visit to Kyiv
Iran’s East Oil & Gas Production Company boosts gas extraction
Biggest share of Azerbaijan's GDP accounts for industry
Turkmenistan interested in expanding co-op with Russia’s Lipetsk region
Azerbaijani Armed Forces continue exercises, moving to operational areas (VIDEO)
Georgia sees increase in COVID-19 cases
All news