Landslide kills 22 in southern Ethiopia

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Rescue workers on Tuesday used excavators to dig out bodies after a landslide in southern Ethiopia washed away homes and killed more than 20 people, a local official said. 

The landslide in the remote district of Konta occurred Sunday following 10 hours of heavy rains, said the official, Takele Tesfu.

“There are 22 people dead and we have only been able to dig up 17 using manpower and machine power,” Takele told AFP.

“So far, we cannot get the others, so tomorrow we will continue to dig.”

He said the victims included nine women and six children.

While the district — located in Ethiopia’s Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ Region — sees landslides with some regularity, Takele said this was the deadliest he could remember.

“The area where this occurred is very mountainous, and this means the landslide was very dangerous,” he said.

Ethiopia is nearing the end of its rainy season, but security forces are nonetheless relocating some families for fear that more rain in the coming days could lead to similar disasters, Takele said.


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