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Wildfires in Russia under control

Half of the wildfires in Russia are either extinguished or under control, the authorities said on Sunday.

Till now, 338 fires have been put out on an area of 14,500 hectares and 273 fires of 42,600 hectares have been contained, Russian Emergencies Ministry spokesman told Itar-Tass news agency.

The hardest-hit are Voronezh, Ryazan, Vladimir, Ivanovo, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod regions, and republics of Mordovia and Tatarstan.

Wildfires have killed 30 people, left 2,210 others homeless and caused damage worth over 4.6 billion rubles (about 150 million U.S. dollars), the Ministry for Regional Development said Sunday.

Temperatures across much of western and central Russia have topped 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) in the past five weeks. Due to scorching weather, these regions are suffering from a drought, which is thought to be the worst in the country since 1972.