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Deadly flooding wreaks havoc across Indonesia

Dozens of people have disappeared after torrential rain caused landslides to sweep across villages in Indonesia's central region. Authorities have sent rescue teams to disaster-hit areas to search for survivors.

A deadly mix of flash flooding and landslides in Central Java on Sunday left at least 24 people dead and 26 others missing, Indonesia's disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

"Rescue operations are still underway to search for other victims, while dozens of houses are damaged and buried in the landslide and thousands of homes are inundated," Nugroho said in a statement.

Torrential rain on Saturday triggered the unexpected flooding across the province, causing deadly landslides. In one instance, a mud avalanche buried five people in their homes as it swept across a village.

In another district, "a huge landslide struck the cars and people on the street. Nine bodies were retrieved," Nugroho added.

The country's disaster mitigation agency sent five emergency rescue teams to assist regional bodies in searching for survivors and evacuating victims.

Authorities erected temporary shelters to house those fleeing the natural disaster.

"Purworejo district is the hardest hit with the most people killed in numerous villages in the district," Nugroho said.

The vast tropical archipelago is especially prone to landslides caused by extreme weather.

In 2014, over 70 people went missing after a mudslide buried 105 houses in the village of Jemblung in Central Java.

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ls/jlw (AFP, dpa)

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