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One million Sri Lankans hit by floods, 14 dead

Water gushes through the flood gates of Sri Lanka's Udawalawe tank reservoir following heavy monsoon showers on February 3, 2011. Sri Lanka's east, north and central regions have been innundated with heavy rains for the second time since last month. The island's Disaster Management Centre said floods have claimed three people, and affected some 43,000 people. Photo courtesy AFP.

Ten more dead in Philippine floods
Manila (AFP) Feb 5, 2011 - Ten more people have been killed in floods and landslides after nearly a week of heavy rains in the southern Philippines, raising the death toll to 20, the government said Saturday. The remote, Muslim insurgency-wracked island of Jolo was the latest area to suffer from bad weather late Thursday, when flash floods and storm surges killed five people, said Jolo mayor Amin Hussin.

As floodwaters ebbed on the main southern island of Mindanao, rescue workers unearthed the remains of five people who had been buried by landslides earlier in the week, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said. Some 73,000 people are still in evacuation camps after the latest round of heavy rains began to lash Mindanao on January 31, the council said in a bulletin. It was the second time the region had been hit by torrential rains this year. Flooding across the southern and central Philippines last month claimed 75 lives, according to the disaster council.
by Staff Writers
Colombo (AFP) Feb 6, 2011
Sri Lanka's monsoon rains spread to more villages and towns on Sunday, leaving at least 14 people dead and more than one million with flooded homes, officials said.

The number of people in state-run shelters rose to 236,000 by Saturday evening, the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) in Colombo said, adding that 1,053,000 people had had their homes inundated.

Most of the flood victims had moved in with friends and relatives living on higher ground, officials said.

Police figures showed that at least 14 people had been killed in flood-related incidents in the past week.

The DMC said that roads and fields were submerged across the east, centre and north of the island -- areas which had already been badly hit by an earlier wave of monsoon rains last month.

Then, 43 people were killed and the number of people driven from their homes also passed one million.

The latest flooding came after the United Nations issued an appeal for 51 million dollars in emergency aid to help people affected by last month's floods.

earlier related report
Thirteen dead in fresh Sri Lanka floods
Colombo (AFP) Feb 5, 2011 - Renewed rains in Sri Lanka have flooded a large number of towns and villages and killed at least 13 people, officials said Saturday.

Heavy monsoon downpours have driven some 800,000 people out of their flooded homes and into state-run welfare centres or to stay with friends and relatives on higher ground, officials said.

"The situation in the Eastern, North and North Central Provinces is serious as monsoon rains continue," the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said in a statement.

Police said the number of people killed in the latest flood-related incidents had risen to 13 after five people who went missing after a boat accident on Thursday night were later declared dead.

The DMC said that floods were widespread and were flowing over roads, agricultural land and town centres, worsening the damage already caused by rains that began in December.

At least 43 people were killed and a million driven out of their homes last month by flooding.

On Friday, a flood victim gave birth in mid-air minutes after she was plucked to safety by a Bell-212 military helicopter in the north-central region of the country, the air force said.

The woman had been among a group of villagers marooned in the town of Horowpathana, air force spokesman Janaka Nanayakkara said.

A spokesman for the main hospital in the region said the mother -- identified as K. L. Malkanthi, 33 -- and the baby girl were doing well.

The new flooding came after the United Nations issued an appeal for 51 million dollars in emergency aid to help up to a million people affected by floods last month. Most of them were hit once again by the latest rains, officials said.




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Torrential downpours pile misery on Australia
Tully Heads, Australia (AFP) Feb 5, 2011
Torrential rains and flash floods trapped scores of people in homes and cars following a massive cyclone, piling more misery on Australia Saturday after weeks of record inundations. As coastal residents pieced together homes and farms destroyed by Severe Tropical Cyclone Yasi, dramatic deluges brought by cyclone activity caused chaos in the state of Victoria, some 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mil ... read more

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