Thousands Dead As Fatal Storm Hits Libya


At least 3,000 people have died and over 10,000 are feared missing after a fatal storm hit Libya on Monday.

The storm Daniel according to CNN, hit the northeastern part of Libya where it collapsed two dams and had water flowing into already inundated places.

The city of Derna is the most affected so far.

“The death toll is huge and around 10,000 are reported missing,” CNN quoted Tamer Ramadan, head of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) delegation in Libya, as saying on Tuesday during a press briefing in Geneva.

It also quoted Othman Abduljalil, health minister in Libya’s eastern parliament-backed government, as telling Libya’s Almasar TV that 6,000 people are missing from the eastern city of Derna alone.

Mr Abduljalil described Derna as a ghost town noting that bodies were lying around and families still stuck.

Mahmoud Iftessi from the Libyan Economic and Social Board told Aljazeera that a lack of maintenance led to the collapse of the dams.

“These two dams exploded. As far as urban planning, people were building homes along the river. We have been through mass chaos for 50 years, so that’s the problem,” he told Aljazeera.

“The disaster is beyond the capacity of the Libyan infrastructure. If there is any other word more severe than disaster – we can call it that,” he added.

According to Aljazeera, roads leading to Derna have become impassable as a result of the storm and as such aid cannot reach the city.

However, some affected areas are already getting help.

Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has convened his military commanders to arrange urgent assistance to Libya.

He said in televised comments that the military would deploy equipment and personnel in coordination with eastern Libyan forces to help affected communities.

A plane carrying search and rescue teams and survival supplies from Turkey to Libya had earlier arrived in Libya, according to Turkish state media.

Turkey’s defence ministry said in a statement: “We continue to deliver search and rescue teams and aid materials to Libya, a friendly and brotherly country.”