Death toll in Indonesian floods rises to 53

Death toll from severe floods and landslides that hit the Indonesian capital Jakarta and neighbouring areas on New Year Day has risen to 53, the country’s disaster agency said on Saturday.

Incessant rain started on New Year’s eve, triggering flooding in Jakarta and its satellite cities, home to about 30 million people.

Homes were submerged and vehicles were swept away, forcing residents to seek refuge elsewhere.

Nine people died in Jakarta, while the rest of the fatalities occurred in neighbouring districts, according to the National Disaster Management Agency.

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The Meteorological, Geophysical and Climatological Agency said the New Year’s rainfall was the most extreme seen since 1866.

Waters have largely receded in affected areas, but the agency warned that the extreme weather could last until next week.

More than 400,000 people were affected by the flood, the disaster agency said.

Authorities launched a weather modification operation on Friday to intercept clouds and induce rain before they reach the greater Jakarta.

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Floods and landslides are common in Indonesia during the rainy season, dpa/NAN reported.

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