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Forest fire in China's NW border region spreads


15:37, September 16, 2011

Photo taken on Sept. 16, 2011 shows the forest fire in Altay, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. The forest fire broke out near China's borders with Mongolia, Russia and Kazakhstan Tuesday, burning an area of 33.33 hectares. Forest armed soldiers have been mobilized to fight the fire. (Xinhua/Wen Xiaolin)

URUMQI, Sept. 16 (Xinhua) -- A forest fire that has been raging since Tuesday in the mountainous Altay Prefecture in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region continues to expand despite the efforts of over 300 firefighters.

The fire has burned an estimated 33 hectares so far and is now threatening another 6.7 hectares, according to a spokesman with the local fire department.

Major areas of the fire have been extinguished, but new sites continue to emerge, he said.

The needle-leaved and broad-leaved trees are an extremely combustible combination, and steep slopes in the forests have made it more difficult for firefighters and helicopters to approach the fire, he said.

More firefighters from nearby cities have been dispatched to join the effort, he added.

The location of the fire has been pinpointed at 48.47 degrees north latitude and 87.35 degrees east longitude, which is near China's borders with Mongolia, Russia and Kazakhstan.

No casualties or live stock losses have been reported.

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LC at 2011-09-16183.39.40.*
Reported to 110 several times about Hot-Air balloons (* oil and fire operated which can light up a mountain so easily if saboteurs were intending to harm China *) flying across the seaside of Dameisha Yantian District Shenzhen to the Wutongshan forest. It happened 3 times in a week every time the wind blew in the direction of the Wutongshan from the sea of Dameisha. But the police who rang me for more information virtually ignored my reports; and the police or security chap thought it was normal. This is a very serious threat to national security and safety of the population if wutongshan is sabotaged by hotair balloons. Please investigate and to STOP or BAN all forms of hotair balloons in China, immediately!

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