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Secretary-General extends condolences to flood victims in Bangladesh

14 June 2017
Statement by: Patricia Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth

Patricia Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, has expressed her sympathy to all those affected by extreme flooding in Bangladesh.  “It saddens my heart to hear of such human suffering,” she stated.  “My sincere condolences to the families of people who have lost their lives.  Once the waters subside, the Commonwealth must come together to help people re-build their lives.”

Over the last two days, heavy rains have triggered a series of landslides and floods in Bangladesh and neighbouring northeast India, killing at least 156 people.   Today fresh landslides have killed another person in the district of Khagrachari and two in the coastal town of Cox's Bazar.  Bordering Myanmar, this town is home to thousands of Rohingya Muslim refugees and was just beginning to recover from Cyclone Mora.

Shah Kamal, the secretary of Bangladesh's disaster ministry, said there has been no rain on Wednesday and that rescue operations are in full swing.  "It is a great relief. Some areas in the district are still cut off but people are being moved through navy boats," he told Reuters by telephone from Rangamati.
Secretary-General Scotland appealed to Commonwealth countries to assist in recovery efforts once the flooding is over.

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