Large-scale forest fires are raging in the Abay region of Kazakhstan, as a result of which 14 forestry workers of the Semey Ormany nature reserve died, ORDA reports .
They started on Thursday after being struck by lightning. As of Saturday, more than 60,000 hectares of forest were engulfed in fire. More than a thousand people are involved in extinguishing the fire.
President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev declared June 12 a day of mourning. He arrived in the Abay region, where he met with the families of the fallen forestry workers. In addition to expressing condolences to them, Tokayev promised to "hold a meeting" with both law enforcement agencies and ministries in order to "learn from this experience."
The Ministry of Emergency Situations of Kazakhstan as of Sunday morning reports on the stabilization of the situation in the Abay region. According to rescuers, only two fires remained in the area of two villages. Nurbolat Derbisov, chairman of the ministry's firefighting service, said that if there were no strong gusts of wind, the fire would be "circled" and move deeper into the forest.