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Nearly 60 die in Iraq flash flood

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A displaced Iraqi girl carries her brother in flooded water at a camp in Baghdad, Iraq, following heavy rainfall, November 5, 2015. (AFP)

Flash flood in Iraq has left nearly 60 people dead over the past few days, says the country’s health ministry.

The Iraqi Health Ministry said on Friday that most of the victims died due to electrocution caused by flood-related incidents.

Iraq was hit by days of heavy torrential rain that caused major flooding in the capital, Baghdad, and other areas.

The heavy rain prompted Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to declare an emergency situation in affected areas overwhelmed by "torrential rainwater that exceeded drainage capacity" and mobilize all government forces to take care of the situation.

The rain, which started last week and still continues with scattered showers, also caused heavy property damage to private and public buildings.

Many streets, houses and shops are flooded with a combination of rainwater and sewage.

Local media reported that the old drainage systems had failed to siphon the heavy downpour into the sewerage.

On social media, however, disgruntled Iraqis criticized the government for what they called the government’s mishandling the disaster.

The flooding also damaged camps for internally displaced people who have fled from areas under the control of the Takfiri Daesh terrorists.

A displaced Iraqi boy stands in flooded water at a camp in Baghdad, Iraq, following heavy rainfall, October 30, 2015. (AFP)


Iraqis have held demonstrations over the past few months, blaming the government for what they called providing inadequate basic services.

The protesters have been discontent with power outages, specifically during summer. The old water drainage systems are also a point of public resentment.

The Abadi administration has launched a reform plan to improve poor services.

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