According to the organization, the number is based on the number of houses that were buried; accident was on Friday (May 24th)

The IOM (International Organization for Migration), a UN agency (United Nations), estimates that more than 670 people died in the landslide that hit a village in Papua New Guinea on Friday (May 24, 2024 ). Initially, local authorities had spoken of 100 deaths. So far, only 5 bodies have been recovered.

The head of the IOM mission in the country, Serhan Aktoprak, said this Sunday (May 26) that the revised number was based on calculations that more than 150 houses were buried by the landslide. The previous estimate was 60 homes. The data is from agencies in Yambali town and Enga province. “They estimate that more than 670 people are trapped”, he declared. The information comes from the Associated Press news agency.

Aktoprak said the new death estimate “is not solid” because it is based on the region’s average family size per household. He claimed to be “hard to say” if that number could be even higher. “We want to be very realistic,” he declared. “We do not want to present numbers that inflate reality”, he added.

Papua New Guinea often experiences heavy rainfall. However, storms and flooding have been more intense in 2024 than normal.

According to AP, The country’s government is evaluating whether there is a need to officially request more international support. Rescue teams are trying to transfer survivors to a safer location and recover the victims’ bodies, which are at a depth of 6 to 8 meters.

The operation is being carried out with the help of helicopters. The landslide blocked the highway that leads to the village. Additionally, there are tons of unstable land, which threatens the rescue effort.

The number of injured and missing people is still being assessed. Seven people, including a child, had received medical treatment as of Saturday (May 25), but authorities did not provide details about their conditions.


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