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Last Updated: Friday, 21 July 2006, 10:25 GMT 11:25 UK
'Hundreds dead' in N Korea floods
Map of North Korea
Hundreds are dead or missing in North Korea after days of heavy rain, according to state media.

Torrential rain has swept through the Korean Peninsula in recent days, causing flooding and landslides both sides of the border.

This is the first confirmation from Pyongyang that the severe weather has led to human casualties.

On Wednesday, state news agency KCNA said flooding had caused "tremendous" economic losses.

The Red Cross said in a statement on the same day that 100 people were dead or missing and entire villages had been swept away.

Damage to agriculture

"This heavy rain left hundreds of people dead or missing in many parts of the country," KCNA said in its latest statement, although it did not give specific figures.

Tens of thousands of houses have been destroyed and infrastructure such as roads and bridges has been badly hit, the agency said.

The worst damage was in central and eastern parts of the country. In South Pyongan Province, about 6,200 houses and 490 public buildings were damaged and large tracts of agricultural land under water, KCNA said.

Flooding in Youngwol, South Korea, on 16 July 2006
South Korea has also been hard hit by flooding

Damage to farming land would be a blow for North Korea, which has in the past experienced severe food shortages caused by natural disasters and outdated agricultural methods.

Food aid from neighbouring South Korea is currently suspended after talks between the two sides collapsed last week in the wake of Pyongyang's 5 July missile tests.

South Korea has also been hit by the seasonal storms, with around 60 people dead or missing after days of rain.

Floods kill dozens in North Asia
19 Jul 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Ten die in South Korean flooding
16 Jul 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Chinese storm kills more than 180
18 Jul 06 |  Asia-Pacific
North Korea's problem with food
23 Sep 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Country profile: North Korea
11 Jul 06 |  Country profiles
Country profile: South Korea
20 Apr 06 |  Country profiles

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