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The aftermath of Storm Daniel in Libya has been marked by immense tragedy, with a reported death toll of at least 2,000 people, and an additional 10,000 individuals are feared to be missing. This devastating situation resulted from the torrential rain that inundated Libya's northeast, causing two dams to collapse and unleashing further flooding in already affected areas.
Tamer Ramadan, leading the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies delegation in Libya, shared these distressing numbers during a press briefing in Geneva, Switzerland, on Tuesday, emphasizing the enormity of the loss of life.
Tragically, among the casualties, at least 145 were Egyptian, according to officials in the northeastern city of Tobruk, Libya.
The eastern city of Derna has borne the brunt of this catastrophe, where as many as 6,000 people are currently unaccounted for. Othman Abduljalil, the health minister in Libya's eastern administration, described the situation as "catastrophic" during his visit to the city on Monday. Authorities believe that entire neighborhoods in Derna may have been swept away by the flooding.
The crisis in Derna has overwhelmed local healthcare facilities, rendering hospitals inoperable and filling morgues to capacity. Osama Aly, a spokesperson for the Emergency and Ambulance service, reported that deceased bodies have been left outside the morgues on sidewalks, as there are insufficient resources for immediate response and recovery.
Families of residents who lived in Derna are living in fear and uncertainty, unable to contact their loved ones since the floods struck. Ayah, a Palestinian woman with cousins in Derna, expressed her deep concern, explaining that all communication with the city appears to be down, leaving her unsure about the safety of her relatives. She described the videos depicting the flooding as terrifying and spoke for many who share this sense of dread.