Thousands trapped in Somalia flash floods – UN

SOMALIA, Mogadishu: Thousands of people are trapped in flooded areas following heavy rains in Somalia’s Jubbaland state, the UN’s humanitarian agency says.

The heavy rains that started last month have elevated the water levels on Juba river, causing flooding in riverine areas of the state, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha) said in a statement.

“In Luuq district, 2,400 people have been trapped in an area surrounded by water,” the statement added.

Efforts by authorities and rescue partners are underway to evacuate the stranded locals.

At least 14 people have died and 47,000 displaced in the flash floods across Somali since last month, Ocha said in an earlier statement.

Somalia’s Information Minister Daud Aweis said the floods, which also affected Hirshabelle and south west states, have caused widespread damage. He appealed for support, adding that the situation was critical.

The country is experiencing heavier than normal rains after emerging from one of its worst droughts in four decades.

The Food and Agriculture Organisation has warned of a high risk of flooding, particularly in the south-western Gedo region.

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