Home News 400 dead in South Africa, including 326 dead in Malawi

400 dead in South Africa, including 326 dead in Malawi

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Cyclone Freddie, with its exceptional longevity, has killed more than 400 people in South Africa, the vast majority of them in Malawi, as the toll mounted on Thursday, as the hope of finding survivors dwindles increasingly.

Investigate the “climate – I don’t care” that prevails at the helm of the state

Freddy struck twice in a few weeks in the region, killing 73 people in Mozambique, 17 in Madagascar and now 326 in Malawi, according to another report announced this evening by the president of this impoverished country.

sequel after announcement

“The death toll from this disaster has increased from 225 to 326, and the number of displaced people has more than doubled.” Their number has exceeded 183,000 in Malawi, Lazarus Chakwera said, heading to Blantyre (south), the economic capital and epicenter of bad weather. More than 300 emergency shelters have been opened.

The hurricane formed in early February off the coast of Australia, and was about to be classified as the longest ever, as it made an unprecedented crossing of more than 8,000 km from east to west in the Indian Ocean. It made its first landfall on February 21 on the east coast of Madagascar, killing 7 people. Then this phenomenon, which lasted for more than 35 days, hit Mozambique, killing 10 people.

Then it struck Madagascar a second time in early March, killing 10 more people there. It also returned to Mozambique, where it caused 63 deaths.

‘National tragedy’

But it was in Malawi, a landlocked country that only felt a surge of rainfall when the cyclone first passed, Freddy wreaked the most destruction on his return. Heavy rains caused floods and landslides.

sequel after announcement

A state of disaster was declared, two weeks of national mourning, and the police and army deployed.

“The hurricane destroyed property, homes, crops and infrastructure, including bridges, isolating communities in desperate need of help.”He expressed his regret to President Chakwera, who reiterated his call for assistance. The head of state had called the day before for international aid in the face of a ‘National tragedy’.

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In neighboring Mozambique, President Filipe Nyusi, who visited the hardest-hit province of Zambezia (centre), on the border with Malawi on Wednesday, called for mobilization “emergency” to Repairing damaged infrastructure.

On Thursday, in the town of Mange near Blantyre, neighbors and rescue workers continued to search the grounds in the hope of finding survivors. But rescues often end in a gruesome collection of decomposing corpses.

sequel after announcement

Residents told AFP that hundreds of dead people were buried in the mud. The stench and air bubbles rising to the surface from the waterlogged ground leave no room for doubt.

Freddy begins to dissipate

On a sticky, rock-strewn road, swarthy-looking men whisper prayers as they lead the way for a team of five soldiers engaged in searches. In front of a house in disrepair, they pull a man’s body out of the ground. His face, which was still legible, retained an expression of pain.

“I hope they find more bodies so they can be buried and rest in peace.”says Rose Ferry, an elderly woman from the area.

Amidst the devastation, sometimes miracles happen: the day before, Promise, a 13-year-old, had been rescued by the emergency services. She was trapped in a collapsed house for three days.

sequel after announcement

Climate: +1.5 degrees or illusion lost

Freddy is starting to dissipate, according to Randall Cervini, rapporteur for the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), who described the phenomenon to AFP. “incredibly long”.

According to experts, the rise in ocean temperature contributes to the intensification of hurricanes. And “Freddy has escalated seven times in his life”noted Roxy Matthew Cole, a climatologist at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology.

Tropical storms and hurricanes appear several times a year in the southwestern Indian Ocean. The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predicts an increase in the frequency of powerful tropical cyclones.

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