Burundi appeals for int'l support for flood victims

BUJUMBURA, April 17 (Xinhua) -- Burundi has appealed for international support for flood victims as the East African country reels from the effects of El Nino.

"For about two centuries, Burundi has been among the 20 most vulnerable countries in the world due to climate change. El Nino has caused a spectacular rise in the waters of Lake Tanganyika, leading to landslides, heavy rains, and violent winds," Burundian Minister of the Interior, Community Development and Public Security Martin Niteretse said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Between September 2023 and April 7, 2024, more than 200,000 people were affected by this El Nino phenomenon, including 20,000 people who were left homeless," Niteretse said, adding that 40,000 hectares of crops were washed away.

He noted that the Burundian government and international partners have been trying to help the victims, but specified that much more help is needed for the victims.

"To alleviate the suffering of the affected communities, we call on the international community -- those who have already contributed and those who have not -- to contribute to sustainable solutions to help the communities avoid the consequences of El Nino and to respond to their current needs," said Niteretse.

To date, the Burundian government and international partners have provided flood victims with seeds, money, food, health care, and access to sanitation and drinking water.

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