Colombo(May 27, 2017): At least 91 people have been killed and over 100 missing due to flooding and mudslides triggered by heavy monsoon rains in Sri Lanka.
According to the country’s Disaster Management Centre, about 24,000 people in 13 districts have been impacted by flooding or landslides. Army troops, boats and helicopters have been sent to help rescue operations. The most affected districts were Ratnapura and Kalutara which both had a series of landslides after the monsoon rains.
Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake said, “We have a problem of limited resources to cope with the situation. Hence, we have made many appeals.” While the country’s Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said the death toll was rising as reports filtered in from remote areas.
DMC deputy minister Dunesh Gankanda told the journalists, “The south-west monsoon began with very intense rain.” He added, “There are some areas where we are unable to reach, but relief operations are under way.” The DMC issued evacuation notices to residents along the Kelani river, which flows through Colombo, amid fears that it was about to burst its banks.
Whereas Home Ministry has set up a 24-hour relief center for the affectees. Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena was scheduled to return to Colombo Friday night after a two-day state visit to Australia and plans to hold an emergency meeting with emergency officials to discuss relief operations, said an official.