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Floods claim 30 lives in Sudan

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July 12, 2007 (KHARTOUM) — Massive flooding in Sudan has claimed at least 30 lives, left another 100 people injured and destroyed 25,000 homes, the interior ministry said on Thursday.

The flood waters swamped outlying areas of Khartoum, a day after sweeping through the capital’s twin city of Omdurman and Kassala, a town near the Eritrean border in the east of the country.

Caused by rising waters of the Nile and Gash rivers due to the rainy season, the disaster has left the government scrambling to help the thousands of people from their engulfed homes.

Hundreds of mud-brick houses have been swept away by the torrent, leaving destitute many of those who had sought refuge in the capital from the country’s various regional rebellions.

Authorities fear the Nile will continue to rise, further submerging the lower areas surrounding the capital. They are also concerned that diseases could break out during the time it takes the floodwaters to subside.

The UN’s World Food Programme launched an emergency relief effort to deliver food to the estimated 20,000 displaced around Kassala, with the UN Mission in Sudan providing helicopters to help deliver the aid.

Egypt has also sent a Hercules plane carrying aid including water purification equipment and tents.

(AFP)

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