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Sri Lanka: mudslide claims 'more than 100 lives'

October 29, 2014

More than 100 people are believed to have been killed in a landslide in Sri Lanka, according to the government. The disaster struck the country's southern region after days of rain.

Sri Lanka Erdrutsch 29.10.2014
Image: AFP/Getty Images/S. Kodikara

A landslide in hilly south-central Sri Lanka is believed to have claimed "more than 100 lives," Disaster Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said on Wednesday.

Amaraweera, who was speaking from the disaster site in the village of Haldummulla, about 190 km (120 miles) from the capital Colombo, also confirmed that the government had suspended its relief efforts "because of darkness and inclement weather," said Mahinda Amaraweera.

"There is also a threat of further landslides," he added.

The landslide hit the village in the tea-growing are of Sri Lanka on Wednesday, following several days of heavy monsoon rain. More than 150 homes were destroyed.

According to the Disaster Management Center, 10 bodies have been found so far and the death toll is expected to rise. At least 300 people are listed as missing.

Because the area is prone to mudslides, villagers had been advised to move away. Many of them ignored the warning, according to the Sri Lankan government.

das/kms (Reuters, AP)