Rainy season off to a deadly start as flash floods kill scores in Sudan

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People walk on a flooded road near the village of Aboud in El Manaqil district, Sudan, August 18, 2022. AP/Sami Mohamed

Cairo — The death toll from flash floods in Sudan since the start of the country’s rainy season has climbed to 83, an official said Tuesday as the downpours continued to inundate villages across the east African nation. Brig. Gen. Abdul-Jalil Abdul-Rahim, spokesman for Sudan’s National Council for Civil Defense, said that at least 36 people have been injured since May. More than 18,200 houses have been “completely destroyed” across the country while at least 25,600 were partly damaged.
 
The United Nations said more than 146,200 people have been affected by floods. Video aired by local media shows rising waters submerging villages. Authorities have declared a state of emergency in six of the country’s 18 provinces.
 
The western Darfur region and the provinces of Nile River, White Nile, West Kordofan and South Kordofan are among the hardest hit, according to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, or OCHA.

Damage is seen after a heavy rainfall in the village of Aboud in the El-Manaqil district of the Al-Jazirah Province of Sudan on August 22, 2022. Marwan Ali/AP

U.N. agencies suffer from significant funding shortages. OCHA said donors provided around $608 million for Sudan’s humanitarian response so far this year — less than a third of what is required for this year.
 
Sudan has been without a functioning government since an October military coup derailed its short-lived democratic transition following the 2019 removal of longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir in a popular uprising.
 
Sudan’s rainy season usually starts in June and lasts until the end of September, with floods peaking in August and September. More than 80 people were killed last year in flood-related incidents during the rainy season.

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