A extreme chilly snap killed at the least 17 individuals in Afghanistan on Saturday, authorities officials stated, as heavy snowfall and rain continued to lash elements of the nation.
Afghanistan isn’t any stranger to extreme winter climate, throughout which numerous warring teams within the nation have traditionally ceased hostilities, however this yr has been notably harsh, based on the nation’s metrological division.
The officials stated the demise toll might rise additional, with Afghanistan’s Pure Catastrophe Administration Authority nonetheless attempting to compile a complete determine.
“We were not expecting such a bad cold wave in the country,” Tamim Azimi, a spokesman for the Pure Catastrophe Administration staff instructed Reuters.
“We have received reports that heavy snowfall has caused casualties, but at the moment we don’t have information on the exact number,” he stated.
Saturday’s deaths carry the variety of casualties from this yr’s chilly snap to at the least 24, as temperatures in elements of the nation dropped to minus 12 levels Celsius (10 Fahrenheit).
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Heavy snowfall has closed many key roads because the New 12 months, together with the Salang Tunnel connecting central Afghanistan with the north of the nation, and the Kabul-Kandahar freeway.
Afghanistan’s western province of Herat has additionally been hit badly. On Saturday, heavy snow triggered the roofs of two homes to break down, killing at the least eight individuals, together with girls and kids, a spokesman for the province’s governor stated.
Different elements of the nation have skilled heavy rainfall.
“We’re now expecting more cold waves in the coming weeks,” stated Mohammad Nasim Muradi, the top of the forecasting wing of the meteorological division.
The United Nations had beforehand estimated that at the least 9 million Afghans are in want of humanitarian assist, together with primary meals and housing amid a drawn out warfare that has up to now displaced a whole lot of 1000’s of individuals