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Landslide in Papua New Guinea: 4 Dead and Over 300 Buried

Papua New Guinea

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea: A devastating landslide in Papua New Guinea’s remote highlands has left at least four people dead and more than 300 others buried under towering mounds of rubble and mud. The disaster struck an isolated part of Enga province around 3:00 am on Friday when many villagers were still asleep in their homes.

Details of the Incident in Papua New Guinea

  • Location: The landslide occurred in the Kaokalam village in Enga Province, approximately 600 km (370 miles) northwest of the capital, Port Moresby.
  • Extent of Damage: Over 1,100 houses were buried by the massive landslide, effectively wiping out the village’s livestock, food gardens, and sources of clean water.
  • Search and Rescue Efforts: Rescue teams have been working tirelessly to locate survivors and retrieve bodies from the debris. However, the challenging terrain and ongoing land movement have made the operation dangerous.
  • Humanitarian Concerns: Aid agencies are concerned about the potential high death toll due to the landslide’s impact on the sparsely populated area.
  • Previous Incidents: In March, another landslide in a nearby province claimed the lives of at least 23 people.

The Aftermath

Images from the scene depict total devastation, with a massive section of earth cleaved from densely vegetated Mount Mungalo. Barefoot workers are using shovels, axes, and improvised tools to sift through the debris. Car-sized boulders, trees, and dirt stretch down toward the valley floor. The catastrophe has left the hillside settlement in ruins, and the immediate concern is for the safety and well-being of those trapped under the rubble1.

As rescue efforts continue, authorities are grappling with the scale of the disaster and the urgent need for medical assistance, food, and shelter for the affected villagers. The region, sitting just south of the equator, is prone to heavy rains, which may have contributed to the landslide.

Our thoughts are with the victims and their families during this difficult time. Further updates will be provided as the situation unfolds.

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