Friday 15 November 2013

Forgotten cyclone hits Africa

While the eyes of the world have been on Typhoon Haiyan as it devastated the Philippines (see my blog of 12 Nov), a cyclone has killed at least 140 people in the Somali region of Puntland. Hundreds of homes have been destroyed, and livestock has perished by the thousand.

The authorities say many people are still missing, and fear the death toll could reach 300. Heavy flooding has made many of the region’s dirt roads impassable, making it hard to get supplies to stricken communities.

Makeshift shelters have been built to accommodate people driven from their homes, while the government has appealed to international aid agencies to help. The Somali government has pledged $1 million.

Puntland declared itself an autonomous state in 1998 in an attempt to escape the clan warfare that has disfigured so much of Somalia, but the region has not escaped armed conflict and has been used by pirates as a base for attacks on international shipping.

·        * Another Spanish review of my book Historia mundial de los desastres

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