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Brazil: deaths due to storms and floods in the south of the country rise to 152

Brazil: deaths due to storms and floods in the south of the country rise to 152

The number of deaths from the storms that hit the south of Brazil and have caused floods never seen before in the region now totals 152, regional authorities reported this Thursday.

According to the latest Civil Defense report, the number of missing people is now 104 and some 615,000 people are displaced due to the rains.

The state of Río de Grande do Sul, bordering Argentina and Uruguay, is experiencing the most dramatic situation, with 151 of the dead, 90% of the municipalities affected and 2.1 million people affected.

With a total population estimated at 11.3 million, some 615,000 people were forced to leave their homes and are now taking refuge in makeshift shelters depending on donations or in the residences of a friend or family member.

The situation has been much more moderate in the neighboring state of Santa Catarina, where one death has been reported.

In Porto Alegre, the capital of Rio Grande do Sul, the waters begin to decrease after two days without rain and the Guaíba River, which since May 3 caused flooding in the city center, dropped below 5 meters.

Meanwhile, the destruction left by the waters is revealed and rats and dead animals are seen in the streets of some neighborhoods of the city that are also submerged in a strong stench.

While the waters are going down in the capital, in the south of the state, in Lagoa do Patos, they continue to rise and have already more than doubled the levels and several surrounding municipalities remain under alert.

In the midst of the chaos experienced in the region, the authorities have managed to restore water and electricity services in 95% of the homes, but some 90 roads remain blocked and the Porto Alegre international airport, the main airport in the region, remains closed.

The economic measures for the region have not been long in coming and the day before, the Brazilian president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silvaduring his third visit to the region, announced a new aid package for some 200,000 families in the state of Rio Grande do Sul who lost everything to the floods.

In addition to disbursing some 1,200 million reais (US$ 235 million or 222 million euros) that will be distributed among families, they will be able to access a job guarantee fund in advance and will be provided with public credit for the reconstruction of homes. or buying new ones.

The new aid is added to the 50 billion reais (about US$9.8 billion or 9.09 billion euros), announced last week by the Government, which includes direct assistance and subsidized loans for small businesses, among many other measures.

Source: Gestion

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