Flood: Hundreds of Bodies Retrieved From Rubbles

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A car carried by flood on Monday 11 September, 2023 in Derna, Libya. (Picture Credit: AP).

TRIPOLI - Mediaage NG News – A humanitarian agency on Tuesday said rescue teams in eastern Libya have retrieved hundreds of bodies from the rubble in a coastal city that has been inundated by devastating floods, a humanitarian agency said Tuesday.

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Authorities estimated that as many as 2,000 people are believed dead in the city of Derna.

Mediterranean Storm Daniel caused devastating floods in many towns in eastern Libya. But, the worst destruction was in Derna, where heavy rainfall and floods broke dams and washed away entire neighborhoods, authorities said.

Ossama Hamad, prime minister of the east Libya government, said that several thousand people were missing in the city and many were believed to have been carried away after two upstream dams burst.

After more than a decade of chaos, Libya remains divided between two rival administrations: one in the east and one in the west, each backed by militias and foreign governments. The conflict has left the oil rich country with crumbling and inadequate infrastructure.

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The Libyan Red Crescent said early Tuesday that its teams counted more than 300 people dead in Derna. The government in east Libya declared the city a disaster zone.

More bodies were still under the rubble in the city’s neighborhoods, or washed away to the sea, according to east Libya’s health minister, Othman Abduljaleel.

Derna residents posted videos online showing major devastation. Entire residential blocks were erased along Wadi Derna, a river that runs down from the mountains through the city center. Multi-story apartment buildings that once stood well back from the river were partially collapsed into mud.

Abduljaleel said the city was inaccessible and bodies were scattered across it, according to Libya’s state-run news agency. He said there wasn’t an exact death toll as of Monday night in Derna, but the tally is expected to exceed 2,000 as teams combed through the rubble.


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