Flood waters hide the streets in Blagoveshchensk, Russia, on Friday, August 16. Aid was being flown into the city on Saturday.
3 regions in Russia's Far East suffer catastrophic flooding
A government ministry says at least 18,000 are affected
Authorities set up 166 shelters, ship in emergency aid, state news reports
(CNN) -- Catastrophic flooding has prompted the evacuation of thousands upon thousands of people in Russia's Far East, a government ministry said Sunday, spurring hasty efforts to set up housing for the displaced.
Russia's emergency ministry said Sunday that 18,000 people had been affected in three regions north of China not far from the Sea of Okhotsk. RIA Novosti, a state-run news agency, identified the affected regions as the Amur region, Khabarovsk Territory and the Jewish Autonomous Region.
This report, citing an emergency ministry spokesperson, had an even larger number of people affected after heavy rains spurred the floods -- 32,000, of which 17,000 had been evacuated.
The evacuees had lived in thousands of homes and apartment buildings across 121 impacted towns and villages, including some like Amurskaya Oblast, Khabarovskiy Krai and Evreiskaya Oblast that were particularly devastated.
Authorities rushed to set up 166 temporary shelters and move in food, water and medical supplies, Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova said, according to RIA Novosti. That report, for instance, said that a plane had headed to the city of Blagoveshchensk with 53 tons of aid, including food, life jackets and boats.
JOHANNESBURG – An eclectic mix of world leaders including President Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro will eulogize Nelson Mandela before a crowd of nearly 100,000 mourners at a massive memorial service Tuesday in the World Cup soccer stadium where the anti-apartheid champion made his last public appearance.
"What a fantastic gift God gave to us in this Mandela, who quickly became an icon, a global icon of forgiveness, of generosity of spirit," Archbishop Desmond Tutu told a gathering Monday at the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory.