23 killed in Thailand floods

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Bangkok, Aug 2 (IANS) At least 23 people have been killed in flash floods in Thailand caused by continued heavy rainfall, officials said on Wednesday.

Approximately 1.2 million people were affected by the deluge and a total of 44 out of Thailand’s 67 provinces were flooded, Efe news cited the latest update from the Department for Disaster Prevention and Mitigation as saying.

The government approved an emergency fund of 35 million baht ($1 million) to alleviate the damage by the catastrophe.

Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday visited Sakon Nakhon province, the hardest-hit by flooding.

He said the Thailand King had expressed concerns for the flood-affectees and told the government to help the people, the Nation daily reported.

In late 2011, heavy rainfall and lack of coordination among local authorities led to what was considered the worst flood recorded in more than half a century in the country, said the report.

More than 500 people lost their lives and Thailand’s economy was severely affected as several industrial parks came to a standstill and one of Bangkok’s airports closed down temporarily.

–IANS

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