Floods kill 13 people in Morocco

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RABAT, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Flash floods from heavy rains in northern Morocco killed 13 people overnight and inundated 170 manufacturing plants, the Interior Ministry and government rescue service said on Friday.

Eleven people were killed in the hamlet of Driouch, 500 km (300 miles) north of Rabat, when their homes collapsed.

Two more people died in floods in Tangier, where a river overflowed its banks and submerged 170 manufacturing plants.

The official news agency MAP quoted business leaders in the city as saying the floods had damaged machinery and finished products, mostly textiles for export to Europe.

"All the plants in the manufacturing area, which employs up to 30,000 workers, were shut down and will need four weeks to three months to resume work," MAP quoted Adil Rais, a leading business figure in Tangier, as saying.

At least 25 people were killed in several Moroccan provinces in the past two weeks in floods triggered by heavy rains, according to local media.

Morocco, which suffers cyclical droughts, received its highest levels of rains in 35 years during the period from Sept. 17 to Oct. 23, according to local disaster and weather officials.

(Reporting by Lamine Ghanmi; Editing by Peter Millership)

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