Fires Destroy Vast Areas of Forest in Eastern Russia
publishedby Agence France Presse
Vladivostok — Three national parks are under threat and more than 15,000 hectares of forest have already been destroyed by raging fires which broke out in Russia’s Far East region two weeks ago, forest protection officials said Tuesday.
The famous Sikote-Alin national park, home to several Siberian tigers, was particularly at risk, the officials at the Forest Protection Office’s air division said.
Nearly 800 firemen and 130 air units have been mobilised to battle the blazes over the past two weeks.
Forest protection specialists, however, warned more action needs to be taken.
The Yakutsk, Khabarovsk and Primorsky regions have been the worst hit by the fires.
Since April, 564 fires have destroyed 28,000 hectares (69,000 acres) of forest and 19,000 hectares of steppe across theregions.