Hurricane Iota. The death toll rises to 44 in Central America

Hurricane Iota has killed at least 44 people in Central America, in landslides and floods, according to a new report released Thursday, which could increase as aid reaches the affected areas.

Nicaragua and Honduras, with 21 and 14 dead respectively, pay the heaviest price. Five people also perished in Guatemala, two in Colombia, one in Panama and one in El Salvador.

According to Unicef, approximately 4.6 million people, including 1.8 million children, are affected in Central America by the consequences of the passage of Iota which made landfall Monday in northern Nicaragua in category 5, the most high.

Food shortages

In this country, the inhabitants of Bilwi (north-east), one of the most affected towns, were still without water or electricity on Thursday, with food shortages, according to an AFP team in the area.

In the department of Matagalpa (north), where nine people, including six children, perished Tuesday in a landslide, searches have resumed to try to find the missing.

According to the Nicaraguan government, the hurricane caused “Catastrophic damage” on the infrastructure of this country among the poorest in the region.

Research still in progress

In Honduras, where 14 people died in landslides in the department of Lempira (west), help was also continuing their search to identify new victims, according to the authorities.

In Guatemala, three people are also missing. More than 3,500 residents had to be taken to shelter while more than 2,600 houses were damaged.

Iota swept through Central America two weeks after another devastating hurricane, Eta, killed 200 people and affected 2.5 million people.

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