64 dead in Indonesia landslides as La Nina brings heavy rains
Last year, an extended dry season brought on by El Nino set the stage for one of the worst natural disasters Indonesia has seen, the devastating forest and peatland fires that burned an area the size of Macedonia.
This year, an extra-wet dry season brought on by La Nina is bringing calamity in a different form: floods and landslides.
At least 64 people were killed this month in landslides and flash floods and thousands more were displaced, the nation’s disaster management chief, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, said on Friday.
Central Java caught it the worst, with 59 dead in the province, including 43 casualties in Purworejo district, which has declared a state of emergency.
At least five more died in the Sangihe Islands in North Sulawesi.
Ninety-nine people have been killed by landslides this year, Nugroho said, and more than 2,000 had died or gone missing since 2005.
The landslides, he added, were expected to peak from December to March 2017.