Trudeau turns down Russian, U.S., Mexican offers to help fight Fort Mac wildfire

Russia, the U.S., Mexico, Australia, Taiwan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority have all offered help in fighting the northern Alberta wildfire, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says there's no need for international assistance.

OTTAWA — Russia, the U.S., Mexico, Australia, Taiwan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority have all offered help in fighting the northern Alberta wildfire, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says there’s no need for international assistance.

Last week Vladimir Puchkov, the Russian minister of emergency measures, offered to send heavy water bombers and specialized crews to battle the fire that’s been raging out of control near Fort McMurray.

John Babcock, a spokesman for Global Affairs Canada, says there have been a series of other offers since the crisis emerged last week and they have been reviewed against requirements.

Trudeau says Canada sincerely appreciates the international support, but it isn’t necessary.

He says water bombers and firefighters from other provinces, including Ontario, B.C., Quebec and New Brunswick, are getting a handle on the situation.

Babcock says accepting international disaster assistance would not set a precedent and has happened in the past, but he didn’t provide examples.

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