Sun 17 September 2023:
At least 11,300 people have died and another 10,100 are missing from the coastal city of Derna one week after Storm Daniel hit northeastern Libya, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported on Saturday.
An estimated 170 people have been killed as a result of the flooding elsewhere in the country, and more than 40,000 people have been displaced, the UN report said, citing the latest data from International Organizaton for Migration. Figures are expected to rise as search-and-rescue efforts continue to look for survivors.
Citing the Libyan Red Crescent, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) added that 10,100 others were missing in the devastated city.
“These figures are expected to rise in the coming days and weeks as search-and-rescue crews work tirelessly to find survivors,” the OCHA report said.
The revised death toll came as international aid started trickling in, with the UN and countries in Europe and the Middle East offering relief to survivors, including 40,000 people who have been displaced in the wake of the disaster.
The aid includes essential medicines, food, tents, blankets and hygiene kits, as well as heavy machinery to help clear the debris and body bags to allow corpses to be moved.
The UN humanitarian affairs office has launched an appeal for $71m for those affected.
The World Health Organization said on Saturday it had flown in enough emergency aid to reach nearly 250,000 people affected by Storm Daniel across eastern Libya, including essential medicines, surgery supplies and body bags for the deceased.
Saudi Arabia announced the departure of its first aid flight to Libya and Russia said the third of its aid flights had arrived carrying a mobile hospital.
More than 1,000 people have been buried in mass graves, according to the UN, drawing warnings from aid groups about the risk of contaminating water or causing mental distress to families of the deceased.
However, the head of Libya’s National Centre for Disease Control, Hayder al-Sayah, said there was little risk from corpses unless they were carrying diseases.
But he said recorded cases of diarrhoea had risen to 150 from 55 on Friday due to people drinking polluted water.
SOURCE: INDEPENDENT PRESS AND NEWS AGENCIES
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