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14 Killed In Landslides In Colombia


BOGOTA, April 20 (NNN-XINHUA) --Landslides destroyed some 75 homes and killed at least 14 residents in Manizales, a town in west-central Colombia on Wednesday, according to local authorities.

Another 22 people are missing and nearly 400 have been evacuated from homes in danger of being affected by the landslides that hit the capital of Caldas department before dawn.

The incident happened less than three weeks after another mudslide caused by heavy downpours hit the southern Colombian town of Mocoa on April 2, leaving more than 300 people dead.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said he was heading to the disaster site, as he did earlier this month.

"Due to the emergency situation in Manizales caused by the rains, I am heading there immediately," Santos posted to Twitter.

Manizales Mayor Octavio Cardona said 143 millimetres of rain fell Tuesday night, "the same amount that normally falls in a month."

Colombia's Caracol News network published images of the disaster on its website, showing a large muddy trail where ramshackle homes once precariously clung to a hillside, with existing homes still clinging to the hill on both sides of the mudslide.

Caracol said the Red Cross was "attending to emergencies in eight points of the city," indicating there may have been as many mudslides in different spots.

According to RCN Radio, the mayor reported three landslides affected a single district, called El Lavadero.

The mayor also said a policeman was among the victims, RCN said. --BERNAMA