300 feared dead in Puntland region after Somalia cyclone


An internally displaced man carries some of his belongings through a flooded section of an IDP camp next to partially submerged cloth and twig shelters following heavy rain and flash floods in the Somalian capital, Mogadishu.


Mohamed Abdiwahab

While super Typhoon Haiyan dominated headlines around the world this week, another storm smashed into Somalia killing as many as 300 people.

The semi-autonomous Puntland region was hit with a deadly cyclone this week that destroyed villages and washed away roads.

"So far we have confirmed the storm killed 140 people," said Abdullahi Ahmed, Puntland's interior minister.

"We are afraid the death toll may reach 300 because many people are still missing. Roads have been cut and the only access to those areas is by air."

Strong winds and heavy rains have caused flooding, and destroyed shelter and livelihoods from homes to boats and cattle.

Many fisherman remained missing from communities along the coast that were severly affected.

"Torrential rains, high wind speeds and flooding has created a state of emergency, with 300 persons feared dead, hundreds others unaccounted for, and countless livestock lost," said the government in a statement.

The Somali government has appealed to international donors for help. It has pledged $1 million in relief funds.

Those affected require access to clean water, food, medicines, blankets and tents.

The BBC reported that only ten doctors and two ambulances were helping the victims.