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6 dead, 5 missing as floods and mudslides hit Sri Lanka

Flash floods and mudslides triggered by heavy rains in Sri Lanka have killed at least six people and left five missing, while more than 5,000 are displaced, officials said Saturday.

Rains have been pounding six districts of the Indian Ocean island nation since Thursday night, and many houses, paddy fields and roads have been inundated, blocking traffic.

Four people died in floods while another two lost their lives in mudslides, according to the government’s Disaster Management Center. Another five people are missing in floods and mudslides.

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A mound of earth crashed onto a house and buried four members of the same family — parents and two children — in Kegalle district, about 85 kilometres east of the capital Colombo on Saturday, officials and local media said.

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A local television channel, Hiru, showed soldiers and villagers removing mud and debris to recover the victims. Later, the body of the daughter was uncovered.

Figures released by the government showed that more than 5,000 people have moved to temporary shelters and more than 600 houses have been damaged.

© 2021 The Canadian Press


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