Russian Aircraft with Rescue Workers to Help Flood-Stricken Serbia

World | May 16, 2014, Friday // 11:41|  views

A group of men tries to push a van out of the flood water in Belgrade, Serbia, 15 May 2014. Photo by EPA/BGNES

Russia has sent an Ilyushin Il-76 aircraft to Nis with 76 rescue workers to help flood-stricken areas in Serbia.

The aircraft landed at the Constantine the Great Airport in Nis at around 8.30 am local time, according to reports of Tanjug.

Eduard Chizhikov from Russia's Ministry of Emergency Situations informed that the rescue team included 20 divers who were well equipped and had experience with such operations.

He said that the rescue workers would remain in Serbia for as long as necessary.

Chizhikov noted that another Russian aircraft carrying humanitarian aid would land in Nis by the end of the day.

The second team of rescuers is to be immediately sent to the area of Obrenovac, which is said to be the worst-hit region.

Meanwhile, an emergency situation has been declared on the entire territory of Serbia due to heavy rainfall and floods.

The Serbian government asked Russia and the European Commission for humanitarian and technical assistance on Thursday.

A total of 6175 people have been evacuated due to the floods, according to recent reports of the local Interior Ministry, as cited by Tanjug.

The disaster has claimed three lives, left 20 people injured, and cut electricity supplies to 300 000 households. The floods also caused landslides in certain areas which destroyed scores of houses.

Serbia has suffered the heaviest rains and floods in the past 120 years, according to reports of local authorities.

The situation in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina is also critical, with a number of roads closed due to overflowing rivers.

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Tags: Serbia, heavy rain, flood, NIS, Belgrade


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