SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) – A large scale landslide that engulfed homes in western Japan killed at least 27 people and left another 10 missing, the Japanese government said on Wednesday (Aug 20). Dozens of houses were buried when mud thundered down a hillside in Hiroshima overnight, television pictures showed, leaving rescuers to pick through the devastation for any signs of life. “According to the National Police Agency, the death toll has risen to 27 and 10 others are still unaccounted for,” said an official of the disaster management office.
There are “several spots where people are supposed to be buried alive, and we still don’t know how many people are missing”, an emergency services spokesman told AFP. Among the dead was a 53-year-old rescuer, who was killed by a secondary landslide after he had pulled five people to safety, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said. Japanese army were deployed in response to a request from the local government. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said there would be a sizeable response. “I have ordered to carry out the rescue operation in an integrated manner, aware of the possibility of further rain,” he told reporters in Tokyo. “I also ordered them to raise the number of Self-Defence Force personnel to several hundred in order to strengthen rescue operations,” he said, adding he would be sending one of his ministers to the site.