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Over 180 missing after floods hit Nuristan

AT News

KABUL: More than 180 people were unaccounted for early Friday after raging flash floods in Nuristan province left more than 60 people dead and homes devastated with rescue teams struggling amid Taliban threat.

In Nuristan, over 60 people were killed after heavy rains pounded parts of Kamdish district and caused torrential rivers to reduce hundreds of houses to rubble.

Governor of Nuristan Hafiz Abdul Qayyum told the BBC on Friday that about 180 people had disappeared due to floods in Kamdish district, 60 of whom had been found dead.

He said Red Crescent teams had arrived in the district for rescue operation.

Roads have been destroyed, making it difficult to deliver aid, and an investigation is underway into how to help flood victims.

The aid, he said, includes tents, clothing, cooking utensils, cash and non-cash aid, and will be sent to flood victims as soon as the situation improves.

According to the governor, the bodies of some of the victims were found from the Kunar River in Nari, Asmar and Sarkano areas of Kunar province in the vicinity of Nuristan, and efforts are underway to find the other missing and return their bodies to their families.

The floods have also damaged hundreds of hectares of agricultural land.

Saeedullah Nuristani, chairman of the Nuristan Provincial Council, and another councilmember said that 80 houses in the area had been destroyed and flooded.

Nuristan Governor said the area was under Taliban control and that relief forces would arrive if the group did not obstruct aid workers.

The floods in Mirdish village, 6km from Kamdish district center, started late on Thursday night after heavy rains.

Reports from the flooded area indicate that 60 houses and two bridges had been completely destroyed, said Sami Zarb, deputy spokesman for State Ministry for Disaster Management.

According to him, the Taliban have blocked the road in Ghaziabad district near Kunar province leading to Kamdish district and that it is not possible for the aid workers to go to this district.

The Taliban said in a statement on Thursday that the group would help the people in any way possible. The group claimed that their financial commission had allocated $62,000 for the flood victims.

Rainfalls are expected in provinces in the northeast, east, southeast and some central regions, according to the Ministry of State for Disaster Management. Nuristan, Kunar, Nangarhar, Laghman, Logar, Paktia, Khost, Paktika, Kabul and Kapisa provinces are among the provinces where there is a possibility of rain.

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