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Russia's Kamchatka volcanoes spew giant ash clouds

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By Associated Press

MOSCOW (AP) — Two volcanoes erupted Thursday on Russia's far-eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, tossing massive ash clouds miles (kilometers) into the air, forcing flights to divert and blanketing one town with thick, heavy ash.

The Klyuchevskaya Sopka, Eurasia's highest active volcano, exploded along with the Shiveluch volcano, 45 miles (70 kilometers) to the northeast, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry's branch in Kamchatka said, adding that flights in the area had to change course.

Ash clouds from the remote volcanoes billowed up to 33,000 feet (10 kilometers) and were spreading east across the Pacific Ocean, vulcanologist Sergei Senyukov told Rossiya 24 television. Streams of lava flowed down the slopes of Shiveluch.

U.S. Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Tammy Jones said the agency does not anticipate any impact from the eruptions on air traffic to the United States.

The Volcanic Ash Advisory Center in Tokyo issued an advisory for planes to be alert for the ash cloud, although Tokyo's Narita airport said it had no flights diverted yet.


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