Cyclone claims 11 lives in Mozambique

News and Press Release
Originally published
MAPUTO (Reuters) - A tropical cyclone battering southern Mozambique has killed 11 people and severed coastal roads in the storm-weary African country, officials said on Friday.

Cyclone Japhet, bringing driving rain and winds of 100 miles (170 km) per hour, destroyed crops and smashed buildings and forced some 23,000 people from their homes in coastal Inhambane province.

Provincial Governor Aires Aly told Reuters emergency workers were trying to reopen roads so they could get aid supplies to the displaced people.

"Eleven people have been killed so far," Aly said. "Right now the economy of the country is paralysed, since people can't move from the south to the centre and north."

Japhet hit northern Mozambique last week and is the second cyclone to drench the southern African country this year.

Cyclone Delfina killed 47 people and left more that 200,000 people homeless in a country already struggling with severe food shortages after a period of drought.

In 2000, massive floods killed some 700 people and heavily damaged Mozambique's infrastructure.

Reuters - Thomson Reuters Foundation
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