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Myanmar flash floods kill 100: official.

23/10/2011 T0954

Myanmar: More than 100 people were killed in flash floods caused by heavy storms in central Myanmar this week, an official said on Sunday.

"So far, 35 dead bodies were found out of 106 missing people. The other 71 people are also believed to have been killed in the floods" on Thursday and Friday, a government official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"We haven t found their bodies yet and are still searching."

He added that more than 2,000 houses were swept away by the mass of water that hit four towns in the Magway region, and some 6,000 homes were still flooded.

The official put the estimated damage from the disaster at around $1.7 million.

More than 1,500 people had sought refuge in two shelters in the flood-hit town of Pakokku, he added, and were visited by the military-dominated country s second vice-president Sai Mauk Kham on Sunday morning.

The state-run newspaper the New Light of Myanmar also mentioned the flood tragedy in its Sunday edition, but kept the toll to three dead and 80 missing.

Roads, bridges, monasteries and other buildings had been damaged by strong winds and heavy rains in the region but the waters had since receded, it added.

Local officials had started distributing relief aid to the flood victims, the paper said, including providing clean water "to avoid (an) outbreak of cholera".

They were also "engaged in repair works for collapsed bridges and damaged roads", the report said, adding that vehicular traffic in the affected areas had "returned to normal as floods subsided".

A monk in Pakokku said on Friday that the water was believed to have risen to about three metres (10 feet) high after several days of torrential rain.

"Some people, animals, houses and a monastery were swept away when the water rose up," he said at the time.

Southeast Asia has been battered by particularly severe monsoon rains this year.

According to the United Nations, more than 750 people have been killed across Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines.

Thailand has been particularly severely hit, with more than 350 people dead and tens of thousands of people sheltering in evacuation centres.

Bangkok is also bracing to be inundated in parts and the government has said the country s flood crisis could go on for another six weeks.

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Publication:Times of Oman (Muscat, Oman)
Geographic Code:9MYAN
Date:Oct 23, 2011
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