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Colombia Landslide Death Toll Hits 36



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The death toll from recent landslides in northwestern Colombia rose to 36 as rescuers continued to look for at least seven people.

This is according to an official tally Sunday.

Earlier, officials had put the toll from Friday’s landslides, which hit a road linking the cities of Medellin and Quibdo, at 23 dead.

“To all the families of the victims, my heartfelt condolences,” said President Gustavo Petro.

Pope Francis also offered prayers for the victims from the Vatican.

Rescuers, using sniffer dogs and bulldozers, have been racing against the clock to find survivors.

Videos shared on social media showed part of a mountain breaking loose and crashing down onto a line of cars, as screams broke out.

The landslides in Colombia’s Choco department, which lies on the Pacific Ocean, followed more than 24 hours of intense rain.

The Ombudsman’s Office warned of “high risk of new landslides.”

“We call for all necessary actions to be taken in order to safeguard the lives of people who are at risk in the area,” the office said in a bulletin.

A landslide in the same part of Colombia in December 2022 killed at least 27 people, trapping people in a bus and other vehicles.

While much of Colombia is suffering through drought, meteorologists have warned of the risk of heavy rains in several departments bordering the Pacific.

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