By Dan Wooding, Founder of ASSIST News Service
LONDON, UK (ANS – September 1, 2017) – “With Tropical Storm Harvey gathering headlines as the most powerful hurricane to hit Texas in half a century, floods have killed many more people in Africa and Asia this year, as climate change worsens extreme weather worldwide.”
These were the worlds of Anna Pujol-Mazzini, a journalist at the Thomson Reuters Foundation covering humanitarian crises, migration, women’s rights and other rights, in a story that has reminded us of what is also going on in the rest of the world.
Anna, who speaks English, French, Spanish and Italian, then gave details of other floods that we are not hearing much about in the Western Media:
Writing about South Asia, she said, “Floods in India, Bangladesh and Nepal have killed more than 1,200 people and affected 40 million, and are likely to intensify as monsoon rains continue, aid agencies say.
“All three countries suffer frequent flooding during the June-September monsoon season, but aid agencies say things are worse this year with thousands of villages cut off and people deprived of food and clean water for days.
“Tens of thousands of houses, schools and hospitals have been destroyed as humanitarians prepare for more deaths, hunger and water-borne diseases.”
She then quoted a statement from Madara Hettiarachchi, Christian Aid’s* humanitarian head in Asia, which said, “These are some of the worst floods we’ve seen in South Asia in decades and the impact is likely only going to get worse. Farms and livestock have been washed away so food security is going to be a huge problem.” (*This is the UK-based Christian Aid).
Anna then went on to say that the worst floods in a decade have struck Nepal, killing 150 people and destroying 90,000 homes.
“Monsoon floods submerged more than a third of low-lying, densely populated Bangladesh, causing more than 130 deaths and widespread crop damage,” she wrote.
“The latest disaster zone is Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi, where overnight floods killed at least a dozen people, officials said on Thursday.”
She then featured West Africa, where, she said, “Widespread flooding has killed at least 40 people in Niger since the rainy season began in June, leaving thousands homeless, without cattle or crops.
“Aid agencies are increasingly worried about water-borne diseases like cholera as the waters are not expected to subside until rains end in September.
“A mudslide in Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown, on Aug. 14 killed about 500 people after heavy rains, with hundreds still missing.
“Sporadic downpours continue, flooding parts of the coastal city and washing away more mud containing human remains.
“Heavy rainfall also sparked a landslide at a rubbish dump in Conakry, the capital of neighboring Guinea, last week, killing 10 people, while at least 200 people are thought to have died in another slide in the Democratic Republic of Congo.”
Yemen was also featured in her story, where she said, “At least 18 people were killed in Yemen in flooding caused by heavy rains, the government-run news agency Saba reported on Wednesday.”
She added, “Aid organizations say the rains could exacerbate Yemen’s cholera epidemic, which has infected more than half a million people and killed nearly 2,000 since April.”
Sources: Oxfam, ICRC, UNICEF, Thomson Reuters Foundation, Reuters. (Reporting by Anna Pujol-Mazzini @annapmzn, Editing by Katy Migiro and Lyndsay Griffiths).
We at ANS would like to thank the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience, for first releasing this information. Visit http://news.trust.org). Also our thanks to missionary journalist, Ken MacHarg (email@example.com) , for drawing our attention to this important story.
Captions: 1) Floods in India, Bangladesh and Nepal have killed more than 1,200 people and affected 40 million. 2) Anna Pujol-Mazzini. 3) Flooding in Yemen. 4) Dan Wooding at the microphone at KWVE while was recording his weekly “Front Page Radio” show.
About the writer: Dan Wooding, 76, is an award-winning winning author, broadcaster and journalist who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, and is now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for more than 54 years. Dan is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS). He is also the author of numerous books and has two US-based TV programs, and also a weekly radio show. Dan’s, most recent honor was a top humanitarian award at a film festival in Beverly Hills, California, for his long-standing reporting on persecuted Christians around the world. It was presented to him by his son, Peter Wooding.
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