Fifty-seven forest fires are raging on an area of 1,919 hectares in Siberia on Friday morning, the regional forestry department said in a press release.

The fire-stricken area has grown slightly in the past 24 hours. "Sixteen forest fires have been contained on an area of 534.5 hectares," it said.

Wildfires are currently burning in the Krasnoyarsk Territory (40 on an area of 1,498 hectares), the Republic of Buryatia (two on an area of 2.3 hectares), the Republic of Tuva (six on an area of 154.6 hectares), the Irkutsk region (one on an area of 0.1 hectares), and the Tomsk region (eight on an area of 263.5 hectares).

Twenty forest fires covering an area of 547.3 hectares have been extinguished in Siberia's Buryatia, Tuva, Trans-Baikal Territory, Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Tomsk region over the past 24 hours.

A total of 895 specialists, 39 units of equipment and 20 aircraft have been combating the wildfires in Siberia.

"Dry thunderstorms have caused the majority of forest fires," the department said.

A wildfire alert has been issued for two districts of the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the whole of the Tomsk region. A state of emergency has been declared in the Severo-Yeniseysk and Yeniseysk districts of the Krasnoyarsk Territory.

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