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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 December 2005, 14:31 GMT
Yemen landslide kills 30 people
Yemenis wait on the rubble of their houses for news of their loved ones following the landslide
It was not immediately clear what caused the landslide
At least 30 people are dead and dozens are missing after a landslide destroyed a mountainside village in Yemen, government officials have said.

Around 30 houses were swept away in the village of al-Dhafir, about 50km (31 miles) west of the capital Sanaa.

Another 35 people have been injured in the disaster.

Police and troops are digging through the rubble for survivors. Prime Minister Abdul Qadir Bajamal visited the village to monitor the search.

More than 20 bodies have been recovered so far, the authorities say. Witnesses in the village believe the final death toll could be as high as 60.

Yemeni Vice-President Abdu Rabu Manur Hadi joined the prime minister in supervising rescue efforts, but correspondents say these are being hampered by the mountainous terrain.

'Uncommon'

Map showing Yemen

A government official said large rocks tumbled down the mountain destroying the houses below.

The cause of the landslide is still unclear.

Yemen's seismology centre said there had been no sign of any earthquake nor news of severe weather, the AFP news agency reported.

Landslides are uncommon in Yemen, but the country is prone to floods in spring and summer.




SEE ALSO:
Country profile: Yemen
26 Oct 05 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Yemen
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German diplomat missing in Yemen
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