Over 50 dead in flash floods in Indonesia, Timor Leste

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JAKARTA, Indonesia

More than 50 people were killed after flash floods and landslides swept an island in southern Indonesia and neighboring Timor Leste on Sunday, with the death toll expected to rise, rescue officials said.

“After verifying the data with our team in the field, we found that there are 41 people dead. Twenty-seven people are still missing and nine people are injured,” Raditya Jati, spokesperson for the Indonesian disaster mitigation agency, told a virtual press conference, revising down the earlier death toll put in 44.

Mud rolled down from surrounding hills shortly after midnight and struck nearly 50 houses in the village of Lamenele on Flores Island.

The agency said the floods were due to heavy rains in East Flores over the last several hours.

In neighboring Timor Leste, 11 were killed by floods in the capital Dili, authorities said.

“We are still searching for the areas impacted by the natural disasters,” Joaquim Jose Gusmao dos Reis Martins, secretary of state for civil protection for Timor, told journalists.

The death toll and the number of injured victims could still rise, authorities warned.

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