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24 dead, 26 missing in Indonesian floods, landslides

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JAKARTA — Flash flooding and landslides in Indonesia have killed 24 and left more than two dozen missing, an official says, with mud avalanches burying people inside their homes.

Torrential rain since Saturday has triggered serious flooding across Central Java, with thousands of homes inundated, said disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

“Initial data… shows the impact of the floods and landslides in Central Java has caused 24 deaths, with 26 others still missing,” Mr Sutopo said in a statement.

Footage aired by local broadcasters showed villagers sitting on their roofs to escape the rising water, their cars and homes submerged in brown water.

Areas prone to landslides in the densely-populated province were the worst hit, with drivers swept off roads and dozens of homes destroyed by fast-moving walls of mud, rock and water.

In one district, five people were buried in their homes as a landslide swept through the village. In another, nine people were killed as they tried to clear rubble from a road.

“Suddenly a huge landslide struck the cars and people on the street. Nine bodies were retrieved,” Mr Sutopo said in a statement.

Search and rescue crews are combing villages for the 26 still missing, Mr Sutopo added.

Temporary shelters have been erected to help those evacuated from the disaster zone.

Landslides are not uncommon in Indonesia.

Last month, 15 students holidaying at a popular tourist spot in western Indonesia were killed when a landslide swept through their camp ground.

AFP

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5 dead as gunman attacks churchgoers in Russia

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At least five people were killed and another five were injured when a gunman attacked a crowd of people leaving a church on Sunday in Russia’s southern province of Dagestan, Russian news agencies reported.

The attack occurred in the village of Kizlyar in the Muslim-majority republic of Dagestan.

Russian news agencies said the attack occurred as churchgoers celebrated Maslenitsa, a Christian holiday marking the last day before Lent according to the eastern Orthodox calendar.

CCTV footage from the site of the deadly shooting shows a man armed with a rifle gunning down two women in broad daylight.

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A bearded man clad in a black vest and camouflage pants was seen crossing the street before opening fire on two female churchgoers as they left a service in Kizlyar in the Republic of Dagestan on Sunday afternoon. A woman walking several meters from the attacker was seen rushing away as the bloodshed unfolded.

The attacker was identified as a 22-year-old man local to the region, the TASS news agency said, citing the investigative committee.

He was shot and killed by security services who were on duty nearby, TASS said, adding that a hunting rifle, bullets and a knife were discovered on his person.

Initial reports suggested all five victims were women, TASS said, citing the local branch of the interior ministry.

Agencies

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