Tropical cyclone kills scores in Somalia

Puntland president says at least 100 people killed and electricity and phones down in the affected towns.

    The towns of Eyl and Bandarbeyla in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland were the worst hit [Al Jazeera]
    The towns of Eyl and Bandarbeyla in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland were the worst hit [Al Jazeera]

    At least 100 people died in a tropical cyclone in Somalia's semi-autonomous Puntland region, President Abdirahman Mohamud Farole said as he appealed for help from aid agencies.

    "A heavy storm hit Bandarbeyla and Eyl towns on Saturday and Sunday. About a hundred people died. Hundreds of houses and livestock were swept by the floods into the ocean," Farole said on Monday.

    "We urge United Nations aid agencies to assist the victims."

    The government of Puntland declared a natural disaster emergency, and said that hundreds of people remained unaccounted for.

    Winds reached 90km an hour and as much as 350mm of rain fell during the storm in an area that has an average annual rainfall of 250mm.

    Local authorities in Eyl and Bandarbeyla said the remote settlements were badly hit.

    "At least 11 people were killed and six others injured in the Eyl area this morning alone," said Feisal Kalif, deputy commissioner of Eyl. "People are confused, and the situation is getting worse."

    Tropical Cyclone 03A hit the coastal areas first before moving inland into the mainly semi-arid country.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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