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9/05/2007

Wildfires: State of emergency in Siberia

GORNO-ALTAYSK, Russia, Sept. 4 (UPI) -- A state of emergency was declared Tuesday in south-central Siberia as four new wildfires raised the number of fires burning to 36.

The area affected is in Tuva, where more than 4,700 acres have been burned by the fires in the past week, the Itar-Tass news agency reported.

Officials said weather was frustrating firefighters with temperatures running in the 90s, dry conditions and no rain forecast in the near future.

Since April 1, 241 forest fires have been reported in Tuva. The fires have burned more than 94,000 acres, which is double last year's figure, the report said.
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