Afghanistan flash floods kill more than 50
Soldiers and an Afghan local police patarol near Baghlan on March 27, 2012 - by Johannes Eisele
The floods in the remote mountainous district of Baghlan province come a month after a landslide triggered by heavy rains buried a village and killed 300 people in a nearby region.
The twin disasters highlight the challenges facing underdeveloped Afghanistan's next leader as the country heads into the second round of the presidential election on June 14.
"People have lost everything they had -- houses, property, villages, agricultural fields, cattle," Baghlan police spokesman Jawed Basharat said.
"There's nothing left for them to survive. People don't even having drinking water," he added. "They urgently need water, food items, blankets and tents."
Afghan disaster management officials said they were scrambling to get food and medical aid to the area after torrential rains unleashed the floods.
Officials recovered scores of dead bodies from the area, including women and children, with several people said to be missing, according to a spokesman for the provincial governor.
"Heavy torrential rains followed by flash floods have killed more than 50 people in Guzargah-e-Nur district of Baghlan province," Mahmood Haqmal told AFP, warning that the initial death toll was expected to rise.
"This floods have forced thousands of people to flee their houses, and move to safer areas."
The governor of Guzargah-e-Nur, Noor Mohammad Guzar, told AFP the death toll was 66.
"Yesterday's floods have destroyed four villages, and washed away 2,000 residential houses, agricultural fields and also killed thousands of cattle," Guzar added.
Officials were assessing the extent of the damage on life and property in the affected area, the deputy head of the National Disaster Management Authority said .
"Our teams have also provided some edibles (food items) and medication to the affected people. More aid will get there soon," said Mohammad Aslam Sayas.
But Basharat, the Baghlan police spokesman, claimed that the affected families had received no assistance so far from the central government or relief agencies.
Last month a landslide triggered by heavy rains buried a village in a remote area of northeast Badakhshan province killing at least 300 people.
The May 2 disaster left hundreds of families homeless in Argu district of the mountainous province which borders Tajikistan, China and Pakistan.
The floods and landslides follow recent severe flooding that have affected a vast swathe of Afghanistan, particularly northern provinces with 175 people dead and tens of thousands displaced.
Flooding and landslides often occur during the spring rainy season in northern Afghanistan, with flimsy mud houses offering little protection against rising water levels and torrents of mud.
Afghan presidential front-runner Abdullah Abdullah faces former World Bank economist Ashraf Ghani in next week's vote run-off.
- Economic growth kills minority languages: study
- Monfils stuns Dimitrov to make US Open quarter-finals
- 'Islamic State' extremists murder second US reporter
- Second US reporter murdered as Iraq forces advance
- Deadline looms for buyers of struggling Cyprus Airways
- Apple says celebs hacked in 'targeted attack'
- Apple: celebs hacked in 'targeted attack', no iCloud breach
- IMF warns Ukraine may need extra $19 bn in help
- Martin wins stage, Contador takes overall lead
- French finance minister hints at cut in 2015 savings target
- Malaysia ranks 20th in global competitiveness report
- PAS group campaigns to keep Islamist party in Pakatan
- First MH17 crash report due in next two weeks
- First MH17 crash report due in next two weeks: investigators
- With academic’;s case, Najib’;s sedition dragnet now an outrageous farce, says Anwar
- English to be made compulsory pass at public universities – Bernama
- Has Putrajaya gone bonkers, asks the DAP
- Maxis Communications, Anandakrishnan deny allegations in India
- DAP claim Umno 'manufacturing cases' against opposition, academic
- Dr Mahathir praises Malaysian trade union movement – Bernama