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Floods block Darfur highway, destroy main bridge in eastern Sudan

August 15 - 2016 DARFUR / EASTERN SUDAN
Part of the El Gadambeliya bridge south of El Gedaref in eastern Sudan, 13 August 2016 (RD)
Part of the El Gadambeliya bridge south of El Gedaref in eastern Sudan, 13 August 2016 (RD)

Heavy rainfall and flooding on Saturday blocked the highway connecting Nyala, capital of South Darfur, with the North Darfur capital El Fasher. Dozens of vehicles carrying hundreds of people are stranded.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga, one of the passengers told Radio Dabanga that more than 60 passenger lorries are blocked by flood waters running through the valleys between the two cities.

He said that the children, women, and elderly among the passengers “are suffering tremendously, because the authorities did not do anything to prevent the flooding”.

In eastern Sudan, heavy rainfall swept away large parts of the Gadambeliya Bridge, south of El Gedaref. The bridge is part of the Wad Madani-El Gedaref highway.

A listener told Radio Dabanga from Kassala that the heavy rains last week created huge traffic problems in eastern Sudan. “The major eastern cities, El Gedaref, Khashm El Girba, New Halfa, and Kassala are now cut off from central Sudan and Ethiopia.”

According to the Sudanese Red Crescent Society, the heavy rains and floods in Sudan have affected 29,031 families (145,155 people) between 17 June and 10 August this year.

At least 36 people died, and 135 were wounded. 15,537 houses collapsed, and 13.494 houses were damaged. 1,526 head of livestock perished, and 243 acres of agricultural lands were destroyed.

The UN Office for the Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Sudan reported in its weekly bulletin last week, that 29 people have been reportedly killed, and 122,210 people are estimated to have been affected by flooding across the country since June.

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