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Brazil’s Lula Vows Government’s Mobilization against Disastrous Flood

The southern Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul has suffered the worst flooding in its history, leaving 107 dead, so far, 164,000 homeless, hundreds missing and a total of 1.4 million people affected, the daily Metropoles reported today. The Lula da Silva government is treating this as a national emergency and acting swiftly to provide necessary medical supplies, shelters, small potable- water plants, and financial assistance. The government has deployed 15,000 soldiers, firefighters, police, and volunteers to rescue people who may be trapped in their homes.

If drinking water is contaminated, there is a risk of disease. CBS News reported May 8 that in the state’s capital of Porto Alegre, only two of its six water treatment plants are functioning. Hospitals and shelters are being supplied by tankers. Yesterday, the Brazilian Navy’s “Atlantic” ship, the largest in Ibero-America, was scheduled to arrive in Rio Grande do Sul with two water treatment stations.

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