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Lanka floods displace 60,000

By Staff
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Google Oneindia News

COLOMBO, Jan 13 (Reuters) Around 60,000 people have been displaced in Sri Lanka by flooding caused by torrential monsoon rains, the government said on Saturday, while the death toll from landslides a day earlier rose to 13.

Sri Lanka's central tea-growing hills are prone to landslides during the monsoon, particularly in the district of Nuwara Eliya renowned for its lush plantations, where the deaths occurred on Friday.

''A total of 12,500 families have been affected due to the floods and landslides,'' Major-General Gamini Hettiarrachchi, head of the National Disaster Management Centre, told Reuters.

''That is about 60,000 people.'' The southeastern disitrict of Hambantota, which was pounded by the 2004 tsunami, was badly affected.

Hundreds of houses were damaged and thousands of people remain stranded in the central hills, said the government, which is temporarily housing the displaced in schools and welfare centres.

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