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12 die in flooding in Bulgaria after heavy rain

/ 05:57 PM June 20, 2014

Cars are covered in mud in the flooded area of the Black sea town of Varna, Bulgaria, Thursday, June 19, 2014. Two people and a child are reported dead and four more are missing. Torrential rain caused severe flooding in Bulgaria, sweeping away cars, reducing scores of homes to rubble, the country’s civil defense authority said. AP/ImpactPressGroup

SOFIA, Bulgaria — At least 12 people have died and an unknown number are missing after heavy rain and floods hit parts of northeastern Bulgaria, officials said on Friday.

Police in the worst-hit Black Sea resort town of Varna have confirmed that 10 bodies have been recovered from floodwaters. It was unclear how many more people were missing after torrential rain flooded large parts of the coastal town.

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Two more bodies were pulled from muddy waters in the northern city of Dobrich.

A state of emergency has been declared in Varna’s low-lying district of Asparuhovo, where many houses are flooded and dozens of cars have floated away and are lying on top of each other. Rescue teams are bringing distressed people to temporary shelters.

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Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski, who arrived in Varna early Friday, called the flooding “a huge tragedy.” The government declared Monday, June 23, a national day of mourning.

Large parts of the Balkan country have been hit by heavy rain and hailstorms, and hundreds of people have been left without electricity and food supplies.

The national meteorological service said the rain that fell in eastern Bulgaria in the past 24 hours equaled the usual amount per month and warned that more rain was expected.

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TAGS: Bulgaria, Calamities, catastrophe, flashflood, heavy rain
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