landslide buries more than 2,000 people in Papua New Guinea


Ankou SODJAGO

May 27, 2024 at 7:21 p.m.

The death toll from the landslide that hit the remote Enga province in Papua New Guinea continues to rise. More than 2,000 people were buried, according to a letter from the authorities to the UN seen by AFP. Many roads are impassable, complicating the delivery of aid and the evacuation of villages.

“The landslide buried more than 2,000 people alive and caused significant destruction,” the national disaster center said. The International Organization for Migration, present on site, indicates that the situation remains dangerous with rocks continually falling and the earth continuing to slide. An evacuation order was given.

More than 1,200 people from exposed villages are being evacuated by police and soldiers. Villagers dig, sometimes with their bare hands, to try to find survivors.

Despite the obstacles, help is starting to arrive. This weekend, evacuation zones and two emergency medical centers were set up, according to Justine McMahon, director of the NGO Care International. Heavy equipment is expected to reach the disaster area on Tuesday. McMahon also highlights the need to provide psychosocial support to victims, in addition to urgent needs for food, water, shelter, medical assistance and household items.

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