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Tornadoes claim at least 31 in Bangladesh

TWO tornadoes tore through northern Bangladesh, killing at least 31 people, injuring nearly 900 and leaving thousands homeless, officials said yesterday.

The tornadoes struck late on Sunday almost simultaneously, blowing away huts in dozens of farming villages in Gaibandha and Rangpur districts.

At least 28 people were killed and about 800 injured in two areas of Gaibandha district, 190 kilometers north of the capital Dhaka, an administrator鈥檚 office said. The tornado also flattened 700 mud and straw houses. Rescue teams were dispatched.

A second tornado ripped through neighboring Rangpur district, killing at least three people and injuring about 100, private TV station ATN Bangla reported.

The tornadoes blew away or leveled thousands of trees and electricity poles plunging villages into darkness and hampering rescue work, said Mahbubul Islam, a journalist in Rangpur.

鈥淢any villagers, including children, have suffered cuts and bruises from the collapsing debris,鈥?Islam said.


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