Yangon (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Torrential rains on Monday have caused major landslides and flooding in the border region between Myanmar and Bangladesh, forcing more than 10,000 people from their homes. More than a hundred have died, at least 56 in Myanmar and 55 in Bangladesh.
In northwestern Myanmar near Bangladesh, 34 centimetres of rain have caused major flooding. In Maungdaw Township, 28 people were killed, 18 in Buthidaung. Three bridges were swept away in the towns of Mrauk Oo and Kyauk Taw, and homes built on slopes were washed away.
A Red Cross official said that reaching the disaster area was very difficult because of damages to the roads. The Buthidaung-Maungdaw road, which connects Myanmar to Bangladesh, was blocked by a landslide for 17 hours.
Many houses, schools and monasteries were destroyed. Food is in short supply and there is no power.
Large-scale flooding is typical of this time of the year, when monsoon rains begin at the end of May, but deforestation has caused major soil erosion and increased the frequency and severity of landslides when rains are heavy.