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Rains claim 67 lives, dozens missing

Rescuers in desperate search for mudslide survivors

Rains claim 67 lives, dozens missing
Torrential monsoon rain triggered deadly floods in Chittagong Hill Tracts region reporters, Chittagong and Bandarban

June 27, 2012

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At least 67 people were killed and dozens are missing after torrential rain over the past few days triggered landslides in the southeast, officials said. Local officials said at least 20 people died in Chittagong after five days of rain flooded two-thirds of the city. At one point, a record 40 cm of rain fell in 12 hours. Downed electric poles are responsible for some deaths, prompting authorities to impose a blackout. Around 400 people who live in shanties below the hills of Chittagong, the country’s second largest city, were evacuated to prevent further casualties. Domestic and international flights remain suspended at the city's Shah Amanat Airport, and train services between Dhaka and Chittagong were also cut off when a railway bridge collapsed. Several people were buried alive in Ukhiya sub-district near Cox’s Bazar when hills collapsed on mud-roof shanties. In the Chittagong Hill Tracts, at least 32 people died in mudslides sparked by a rush of floodwater from the hills in the Lama and Naikhongchhari sub-districts of Bandarban yesterday. Rescuers continue to search for survivors and fear the death toll might rise, said Tariqul Islam, the chief government official in the district. The hilly remote areas are now totally cut off from the district headquarters and other parts of the country. The rain stopped late yesterday.
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