Russia evacuates 2 villages in Siberia because of wildfires

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MOSCOW (AP) — Russian authorities have started to evacuate two villages in a vast region of Siberia where 155 active forest fires are burning. A regional emergency task force said fires threatened a dozen villages in northeastern Siberia’s Sakha-Yakutia republic on Sunday. Yakutia’s governor ordered officials to clear fire trails around the endangered settlements of dead wood and fallen trees. Local authorities were moving the residents of two villages, Kalvitsa and Kharyyalakh, to other inhabited areas as crews totaling 3,600 people worked to contain about half of the blazes. Authorities say destroyed 31 houses and eight maintenance buildings in another village, Byas-Kuel, and about 400 residents were evacuated on Saturday. 

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