A Maltese rescue team found on Friday hundreds of bodies on a beach in the Libyan city of Derna affected by floods, as reported this Saturday by the Malta Civil Protection Department. “There were probably around 400, but it’s difficult to say,” Natalino Bezzina, who manages the Maltese team, told the Times of Malta newspaper. This country deployed a team of 72 first responders from the army and the Civil Protection department on Wednesday.
The discovery was made by a four-person team who first found a group of seven bodies, including those of three children, inside a seaside cave. The bodies are believed to have been washed away by heavy floods after rains from Storm Daniel caused two dams to collapse, leveling a quarter of the coastal city.
Bezzina told Maltese media that a small team located the cave which was half submerged and saw bodies inside. As they continued the search, boats joined them. They finally found a small bay filled with debris and several hundred bodies.
Hopes of finding survivors fade six days after the floods that caused thousands of deaths, while humanitarian groups warn of the danger of disease and problems in providing aid.
The waterspout that fell last weekend in the port city burst two dams and caused a dazzling flood that destroyed everything in its path: buildings, vehicles, people… The flood, comparable to a tsunami of several meters, left a landscape of desolation, with much of the city devastated as if a strong earthquake had occurred, said an AFP photographer. Entire buildings were washed away. Others are half destroyed, with vehicles wedged into their walls.