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AFGHANISTAN: Death toll in flash floods jumps to 26, 40 missing

THE death toll from overnight flash floods caused by torrential rain in central Afghanistan has risen to 26, with more than 40 people missing, officials said Sunday.

Shafiullah Rahimi, spokesman for the State Ministry for Disaster Management, said a total of 31 people had been killed nationwide in floods since Friday and extensive damage had been caused to property and farmland.

Government spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said urgent aid was being rushed to the main disaster zone in the Jalrez district of Maidan Wardak province.

Although Afghanistan lies on the western edge of the Asian monsoon footprint, flash floods happen regularly during the wet season as heavy rain courses down dry riverbeds.

Rahimi told a news conference that 604 houses had been fully or partially damaged and hundreds of acres of agricultural land and orchards destroyed in Jalrez since Friday.

Nationwide, “in the last four months, 214 people were killed in natural disaster-related incidents”, Rahimi said.

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Naija Times