Deadly landslides hit Bangladesh - UPDATED

Landslides triggered by heavy rain in southeast Bangladesh buried dozens of houses, officials said.

Deadly landslides hit Bangladesh - UPDATED

Landslides triggered by heavy rain in southeast Bangladesh buried dozens of houses and an army camp on Tuesday, killing at least 58 people, officials said.

The landslides hit villages in the Cox's Bazar hill and resort district, where officials said they recorded 25 cm of rainfall in 24 hours to 9 am on Tuesday.

"Among the dead were at least six army soldiers camping on a hillside at Himchhari, and four are missing," one senior Cox's Bazar official said.

"The death toll may go further up as rescuers are searching for bodies."

Heavy rain was still pounding Cox's Bazar and nearby districts as well as offshore islands in the Bay of Bengal, officials said. Low-lying areas have been flooded and communications disrupted, witnesses said.

Landslides hit hillside villages in south and northeastern districts almost every year during the monsoon season. At least 130 people died in the worst landslide in the port city of Chittagong in June 2007.

In the last few years, Bangladesh, one of the world's poorest and most densely populated countries, has seen an increase in intensity and frequency of climate-related problems.

A cyclone in 1991 killed about 140,000 people and another in late 2007 killed over 3,300.

The United Nations Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change has predicted Bangladesh could lose nearly one-fifth of its land by 2050 because of rising sea levels due to global warming.

Reuters

Last Mod: 15 Haziran 2010, 15:04
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