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Heavy Snows, Winds Cause Russia Disruptions

Cars and trucks are stuck in a traffic jam during a snowfall in Moscow on December 4.
People in Russia, a country known for freezing temperatures and snow, have been surprised by the heavy snowfalls of recent days that have paralyzed traffic in big cities and caused chaos at airports.

In Russia's eastern regions, snow was accompanied by strong winds in many areas.

Traffic on roads in the Far East and Maritime regions was suspended on December 4 due to snowdrifts and black ice.

In Moscow, heavy snows reduced traffic to a crawl in the morning.

City officials warned the situation will not improve during the evening rush hour.

Airports from Moscow to Vladivostok reported delays and cancellation of flights.

The unusually severe weather proved no excuse for ministers arriving late to a meeting with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on December 4.

Medvedev chastised them for tardiness, pointing out business representatives had made it on time.

Based on reporting by Interfax, ITAR-TASS, and dpa