• Saturday, Jan 23, 2021
  • Last Update : 07:38 pm

Sri Lanka deploys thousands of troops as flood toll climbs to 177

  • Published at 05:00 pm May 29th, 2017
  • Last updated at 06:00 pm May 29th, 2017
Sri Lanka deploys thousands of troops as flood toll climbs to 177

DA3W4EIVwAAnC-oThousands of Sri Lankan troops battled Monday to get relief supplies to nearly half a million people displaced by the island's worst flooding in well over a decade, which has killed 177 people.

The military said a lull in torrential monsoon rains had allowed it to deploy aircraft, boats and ground troops to evacuate people from flooded areas and deliver food and other essentials.

Almost half a million people have had to abandon their homes after the island suffered its worst flooding in 14 years.

The Disaster Management Centre said 169 people had been confirmed dead, most of them buried by landslides triggered by Friday's intense rains. Another 102 people are listed as missing and 88 are in hospital.

The flooding is the worst since May 2003, when 250 people were killed and 10,000 homes destroyed after a similarly powerful monsoon.

Nearly 2,000 houses have suffered structural damage or been completely destroyed, according to official figures.

International aid

An investigation is under way after an air force transport helicopter crashed during an operation to distribute food to marooned villages in the southern town of Baddegama. The 11-member crew of the Mi-17 transport helicopter were unhurt. On Friday an airman was killed when he fell from a helicopter while trying to winch up a marooned man in the island's south. The government said floodwaters were beginning to recede on Monday but some low-lying areas remained heavily inundated.

All schools in flood-hit areas, including the capital Colombo, will be closed for a week, it said.

Sri Lanka has sought international assistance, with India sending two naval ships laden with supplies over the weekend.

The United Nations said it would donate water containers, water purification tablets and tarpaulins while the World Health Organisation will support medical teams in affected areas. Japan had promised portable electricity generators and a team of experts to help with the relief work, officials said, adding that Pakistan was also in talks with Colombo to send relief supplies. Islamabad recently gave 10,000 tonnes of rice to Sri Lanka to help drought victims. The meteorological department said Friday's rain ended a prolonged drought that had threatened agriculture. It is forecasting more rain in the next two days.
50
Facebook 50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail