MOSCOW, Aug. 7 (UPI) -- Wildfires in Russia have killed more than 50 people and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has donated his own money to help victims, his spokeswoman says.
Medvedev donated 350,000 rubles (about $12,000) to help the more than 3,500 people left homeless, said spokeswoman Natalya Timakova.
An unprecedented heat wave in Russia has contributed to forest and peat bog fires burning in 22 regions in the central part of European Russia, Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported Saturday.
"It is expected that the president's example will be followed by other high-ranking officials," Timakova said.
Medvedev is not a wealthy man. Timakova said his cash deposits total just $123,000. The president also hopes Russia's "ordinary" people will contribute to a fund to help those affected by the fires, Timakova said.