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Last Updated: Saturday, 12 March, 2005, 22:47 GMT
Thousands flee after Iran floods
By Natalia Antelava
BBC News, Teheran

Three people are reported to have died and thousands have fled their homes as a result of floods in Iran.

The rising waters have been caused by continuous rain, some of the heaviest in the past three decades.

This rain and the floods it has caused have affected most of the country but the provinces in the west and north east have been hit particularly hard.

About 100 villages have been flooded in the western province of Lorestan.

Some of them are reported to have completely disappeared under the water.

Officials in the province have called on people to move into temporary shelters which are being set up in schools and university buildings across the affected areas.

The rain that started two days ago has also caused serious landslides damaging several major dams and bridges.

Roads and railway links have been blocked and water supplies cut off in some of the provinces north west of the capital.

And in the northern outskirts of Teheran itself, local officials have warned that some buildings may collapse and called on residents to leave them.

Many fear the situation could get worse as the rain is expected to continue.


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