Obama calls Medvedev, lends assistance to combat wildfires
US President Barack Obama offered condolences and lent assistance to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev as a wave of wildfires have swept across the former Soviet Republic, the White House said Friday, dpa reported.
Obama accepted Medvedev's request for help during a telephone call Thursday and expressed "his deepest condolences for the tragic losses that Russia has suffered," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.
Firefighting equipment was to be sent to Russia from the US aid agency, the Pentagon and the state of California, which is routinely forced to deal with wildfires.
More than 600 fires were burning across Russia Friday, covering more than 80,000 hectares of land. More than 165,000 emergency workers were helping to fight the blazes, including nearly 40,000 sent from other countries.
"The American people stand with the people of Russia in this difficult time," Gibbs said