Russian army, emergency services tackle wildfires raging in country’s east and west

From Karelia to Yakutia, Russia is in the midst of an intense fire season.

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Russian soldiers and emergency services used planes and helicopters to extinguish wildfires raging in various regions of the country, footage released on Friday by the government showed.

Fires have flared across Russia amid a heatwave, tearing through over 1.5 million hectares of land in Yakutia, the worst-hit region.

People in the area have been told to stay indoors and to keep windows shut due to the smoke and the army has been deployed to the area to help tackle the wildfires.

More than 6,500 firefighters are fighting to contain blazes across the country.

[Russian planes seed clouds as raging wildfires near Siberian power plant]

In Karelia, a region that borders Finland, authorities have evacuated hundreds of people from villages due to fires, the TASS news agency reported.

The smoke from the fires reached the nearby city of Petrozavodsk, reports say.

Wildfires happen in Russian forest land annually, but they have become more intense in recent years amid unusually high temperatures across the northern Siberian tundra.

Production by Dmitry Turlyun.