A series of landslides in the southern region of Arequipa, Peru, left at least 15 dead, 20 injured and two missing on Monday, February 6, according to an initial report from the authorities, who specify that the victims are already counted in the thousands. .

“The number of people who have died so far is 15,” said the National Civil Defense Institute in Arequipa, where the first mud and rock slides occurred on Sunday due to torrential rains.

The most affected area is the district of Nicolas Valcarcel, in the province of Camaná, west of Arequipa.

Four localities in the district and the neighboring region of Rio Grande were particularly affected.

Miners carried away

"The situation in these four villages is very unfavorable (...) both in Rio Grande and in Nicolas Valcarcel," regional governor Rohel Sanchez told local television Canal N. He explained that there are many mining activity in the hills surrounding these villages.

"We probably have people (and workers) there who couldn't get out and were swept away by the mudslides," he added.

The total number of victims in Arequipa is currently some 12,000 people, according to the same source.

Landslides in Nicolas Valcarcel damaged 310 houses and destroyed 10 others, and also affected a health center and three rural roads, civil defense said.

Authorities in Arequipa have asked the central government in Lima to declare a state of emergency for natural disasters in the region.

With AFP

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