Forest fires consume 44,000 hectares of land in Russia

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Forest fires have consumed 44,000 hectares of land in 18 provinces, the Russian Federal Forestry Protection Agency said on Saturday, adding that 155 fires had been extinguished in the past 24 hours.

The fire season began in 77 Russian provinces, and the state of emergency was declared in six regions: Kurgan, Trans-Bikal, Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk, Tova and parts of the Chelyabinsk region, the Russian news agency quoted.