Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Typhoon Goni: 40 people killed, 11,000 affected in N. Korean floods

Torrential rains soaked the northern part of North Korea, leaving at least 40 people dead and affecting about 11,000 people over the weekend, the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) said Wednesday.

Caused by Typhoon Goni, the heavy rains particularly hit the border town of Rason, where a special economic zone is located and borders with China and Russia, said Hler Gudjonsson, a spokesman for the Red Cross in Beijing, in a statement.

"Although the typhoon did not make landfall in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) heavy rains accompanying the storm caused flash floods in Rason City over the weekend, killing 40 people and affecting more than 11,000 inhabitants," Gudjonsson said, referring to North Korea by its official name.

The Red Cross Society in North Korea quickly dispatched an 80-member team to respond to the disaster, according to the statement.

In cooperation with the IFRC, the team has assisted evacuation efforts and distributed non-food relief goods to the affected areas, it said.

These items include tarpaulins, family tents, cooking sets, water containers, shelter tool kits, quilts, hygiene kits and water purification tablets, it said.

Citing North Korea's local authorities, the statement said, "153 houses were completely destroyed in the floods while 849 houses were partially damaged."

   "More rain is forecast in DPRK and many disaster prone areas in other provinces are likely to be affected," Khaled Masud Ahmed, a disaster management delegate with the IFRC in North Korea, said in the statement.


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