Heavy rains in Brazil claim 155 lives, 94 still missing

(MENAFN) The devastation wrought by heavy rains in Brazil's southern state of Rio Grande do Sul continues to exact a heavy toll on both lives and property, with the death toll climbing to 155 as of Saturday, accompanied by a concerning tally of 94 individuals still reported as missing. The unfolding tragedy, which has unfolded over the past two weeks, underscores the urgency of response efforts as communities grapple with the aftermath of widespread flooding.

According to a statement released by the state's Civil Defense, the scale of the catastrophe is starkly evident in the rising numbers: 807 individuals have been reported as injured, while a staggering 2.3 million people have been directly impacted by the floods. The displacement of over 620,000 individuals further underscores the profound human toll of the disaster, with tens of thousands finding refuge in shelters hastily established to accommodate those in need.

Amidst the chaos and devastation, the tireless efforts of emergency responders and volunteers have been instrumental in rescuing and providing assistance to affected communities. The statement highlights that over 82,666 individuals have been rescued from perilous situations, with 77,202 individuals currently seeking refuge in shelters across the region.

Against this backdrop of unprecedented destruction, Rio Grande do Sul Governor Eduardo Leite has characterized the situation as "extremely exceptional," noting that it represents the most devastating event in the state's recorded history. In response, Leite has declared a "state of disaster" for 180 days, reflecting the gravity of the situation and the urgent need for coordinated, sustained efforts to address the unfolding crisis.

In the face of such immense loss and suffering, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has pledged unwavering support for the affected communities, visiting the disaster-stricken areas on three separate occasions.



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