Landslides kill 16 in Colombia

May 30th, 2008 - 3:52 pm ICT by admin  

Bogota, May 30 (IANS) At least 16 people were killed and 46 injured after heavy rain lashed Colombia for more than two weeks, EFE news agency reported Friday. The director of the disaster response office, Luz Amanda Pulido, said the downpour caused flooding, mudslides and extensive damage to roads.

Around 27 of the country’s 32 provinces have been affected by the rain since May 15.

“Five people are reported missing and more than 124,343 have been affected in the rain,” she said.

Colombia’s main river Magdalena has burst its banks and flooded at least three cities, Pulido said.

Social protection minister Palacio Betancourt Friday asked the provincial and municipal authorities to alert the local emergency committees for evacuation of residents from high-risk areas to safety.

Weather officials have warned extensive flooding in the north and north-west of the country, as the water levels of all rivers in the region are rising rapidly.

The mudslides in the wake of the heavy rain have cut off roads. Highways and important bridges have been damaged in the deluge, officials said.

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