Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi have been hit by a vicious cyclone that has killed nearly 150 people, left hundreds more missing and stranded tens of thousands. According to the UN and government officials, Cyclone Idai has affected more than 1.5 million people in the three southern African countries.
In Zimbabwe, 39 people have died from the floods so far. According to the government, the deaths are mainly in Zimbabwe’s Chimanimani, a mountainous area along the eastern border with Mozambique that is popular with tourists. The United Nations said more than 100 people are missing. Ministry of Information said the Zimbabwean national army is leading the rescue efforts. UN agencies and the Red Cross are also helping with rescue efforts.
In Mozambique, at least 48 people have been killed in the worst-hit central Sofala province. Dozens of others are missing after the storm brought strong winds, heavy rains and flash flooding destroying bridges and sweeping away homes.
Even before the cyclone made landfall on Friday, heavy rains earlier in the week had already claimed 66 lives and forced 17,000 people from their homes in Mozambique. They also affected neighbouring Malawi, where 56 people have died.