39 More Dead From Cold In Ukraine

KIEV, Ukraine -- Another 39 people have died of cold in Ukraine, bringing to at least 220 the number of deaths since temperatures plunged last week.

A Ukrainian woman with a puppy begs for money in the centre of Kiev. Ukraine is in the grip of extremely cold weather with temperatures in the capital Kiev plunging to about -23 degrees Celsius (-9.4 Fahrenheit).

In addition to the latest death toll -- recorded over a 24-hour period -- at least 292 people have been hospitalized as a result of the cold, the health ministry said Friday.

Most were suffering from frostbite and various stages of hypothermia.

According to the ministry's figures, 220 people died and 2,563 people have been hospitalized as a result of the cold since last Saturday, several days after temperatures first began to plunge in the east of the country.

Friday's double-digit daily death toll came even though the extreme cold that gripped Ukraine for more than a week has let up across the country for two days.

Like neighboring Russia, Ukraine was gripped by severe temperatures starting last week, with the mercury dipping to minus 35 Celsius (minus 31 Fahrenheit) in some parts of the country.

Source: AFP