Afghanistan news: Devastating flash floods kill over 300 in one day, Taliban declares state of emergency | Mint – Mint

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Over 300 people were killed in devastating flash floods in northern Afghanistan, the United Nations said on Saturday, with the Taliban’s interior ministry declaring a state of emergency.

Earlier on Friday, heavy rains caused rivers to rumble, and mud crashed through villages and agricultural land in several provinces, including northern Baghlan, Takhar, and Badakhshan.

In Baghlan alone, more than 300 people were killed, and thousands of houses were destroyed or damaged, the UN’s International Organization for Migration and World Food Agency said.

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The World Food Agency said it was distributing fortified biscuits to the survivors of one of the many floods that hit Afghanistan over the last few weeks.

In Baghlani Jadid alone, over 1,500 homes were damaged or destroyed, and more than 100 people died, Mohammad Fahim Safie, the National Programme Officer leading IOM’s emergency response, said, citing government figures.

Meanwhile, the Taliban government officials said 62 people had died as of Friday night.

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“Hundreds of our fellow citizens have succumbed to these calamitous floods,” government spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement posted to X on Saturday. However, he did not state the the numbers of dead and injured.

Officials said that rains caused heavy damage in northeastern Badakhshan province, central Ghor province and western Herat.

According to the defence ministry, emergency personnel rushed to rescue injured and stranded people affected with the flash floods.

“In addition to human casualties, these floods have also caused huge financial losses to the people,” said Ahmad Seyar Sajid, head of the natural disasters management department in northern Takhar province.

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The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Friday said many people had been left homeless and transportation, water and waste systems were ‘severely disrupted’.

“The impact has been profound, leading to loss of life and injuries, with many individuals still unaccounted for,” the WHO’s Afghanistan office said in a statement late on Friday.

With agency inputs.

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Published: 11 May 2024, 05:00 PM IST

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