Madagascar: tropical storm Irina death toll rises to 65

Weather authorities in Madagascar say 65 people were killed by tropical storm Irina, updating an earlier toll that said only one person had died, Agence France Presse reported.

Most of the victims of Irina, which hit last week, were residents of the Ifanadiana district in the south-east of the island.

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Madagascar’s National Bureau of Natural Catastrophes (BNGRC) said Monday that a further three people remain missing.

The Africa Review website reported that landslides swept away entire houses Ifanadiana, with many villagers left homeless.

“I’ve heard about houses hit by collapsed mountains claiming lives of children,” Modeste Rakajilahy, deputy head of the district of Ambohimahasoa, told the Africa Review.

After lashing Madagascar, Irina hit the coasts of South Africa and Mozambique, which also reported a fatality.

Officials said an elderly man was killed when a tree fell on his house in the southern Gaza province, Press TV reported.

In the South African city of Durban, ships were ordered to remain in port and beaches were closed as the storm generated three-meter-high waves, AFP reported.

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Irina was Madagascar’s second deadly storm of the season, after tropical cyclone Giovanna killed 35 people in February.

In 1994, a cyclone in Madagascar, which is prone to tropical storms, killed 200 people and displaced a further 40,000.

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