Emergency services are trying to identify the number of victims caused by the passage of Storm Daniel, Sunday, September 10, 2023 on the east coast of the country. Torrential rains and the collapse of two dams led to the partial destruction of the city of Derna, which has a population of 100,000. The international community is organizing to provide emergency assistance.
Neighborhoods engulfed under water, dams that have broken, mudslides that take away buildings. The situation is dramatic in Libya, after the floods caused by storm Daniel last Sunday in the east of the country.
Libyan relief services under the Tripoli government, recognized by the international community, released a final human toll mid-day. According to their spokesman, Oussama Ali, the storm left at least 2,300 dead and 7,000 injured in the city of Derna alone, clearly the hardest hit.
The government of the East, rival to that of Tripoli, puts forward an even heavier record: it says that more than 5,200 people died in Derna. The Minister of Health even says he expects twice as many victims. The final toll remains very uncertain. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies remains cautious on the numbers, but recognizes a «huge» death toll that can be counted in thousands. There are an estimated 10,000 missing. There are also 65 other deaths in other cities in eastern Libya.
A IFRC official talks about humanitarian needs that far exceed the capabilities of the Federation, and even the government.