Severe storms trigger floods across Middle East

Thundery showers roll in from the Mediterranean as heavy downpours cause disruption in Syria, Iraq, Iran and Kuwait.

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    Heavy rain leaves widespread flooding across parts of Syria, Iraq, Iran and Kuwait [AFP]
    Heavy rain leaves widespread flooding across parts of Syria, Iraq, Iran and Kuwait [AFP]

    Following the recent floods that swept across Egypt over the weekend, torrential rain has since made its way across the eastern Mediterranean and is headed towards the Caspian Sea.

    Latakia, the principal port city of Syria, reported 24mm of rain on Monday. The next day, 780km across the border in Turkey, Siirt notched up 98mm of rain.

    The band of cloud associated with the heavy rain currently stretches around 2000km from west Kazakhstan to the northern Gulf. There has been flooding in Baghdad where 24mm of rain was recorded in 24 hours.

    May to October is usually bone dry for the Iraqi capital. The wettest months are January and December, when the average monthly rainfall totals are 21mm and 30mm respectively.

    The heaviest rain is currently crawling across Kuwait. Schools have been closed across much of the country because of extensive flooding. Warnings are in force and the emergency services have been working tirelessly to cope.

    Some flights were briefly cancelled out of Kuwait International Airport, but the timetable is now back on schedule. 

    The next few days will see the worst of the rain over western Iran, before finally easing down around Saturday. By which time, some parts could receive between 150 to 200mm of rain.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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