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Turkey Combats Black Sea Floods, At Least 27 Killed
By Staff, Agencies
Emergency workers battled to relieve flood-hit areas of Turkey's Black Sea region on Friday, as the death toll rose to 27 in the second natural disaster to strike the country this month.
The floods, among the worst Turkey has experienced, brought chaos to northern provinces just as authorities were declaring wildfires that raged through southern coastal regions for two weeks had been brought under control.
Torrents of water tossed dozens of cars and heaps of debris along streets, with bridges destroyed, roads closed and electricity cut to hundreds of villages. Media reports said President Tayyip Erdogan was to visit the region on Friday.
"This is the worst flood disaster I have seen," Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu told reporters late on Thursday after surveying damage which extended across the provinces of Bartin, Kastamonu and Sinop.
"The risk that our citizens face is high... There is a lot of damage to infrastructure."
Twenty-five people died as a result of floods in Kastamonu and another two people died in Sinop, the country's Disaster and Emergency Management Directorate [AFAD] said.
Sinop Mayor Baris Ayhan put the death toll in his province at three, adding that authorities could not contact another 20 people. He urged the government to declare it a disaster zone.
"The infrastructure in Ayancik [district] has completely collapsed. The sewage system is destroyed. There is no electricity or water," he told Reuters.
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