Death toll rises to 165 in Germany due to bad weather
Steph Deschamps / July 19, 2021
Devastating floods in western Germany have claimed at least 165 lives, according to a new toll Monday, while many people are still missing.
In the region of Rhineland-Palatinate, the most affected by the disaster, the number of dead is now 117, against 112 counted previously, and there are 749 injured, said to AFP Verena Scheuer, a spokeswoman for the police in Koblenz. In North Rhine-Westphalia, the latest death toll on Sunday was at least 47, while a death was reported in Bavaria, in the south of the country, affected by major floods this weekend. Interior Minister Horst Seehofer is due to visit the affected areas on Monday, including Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler, in one of the valleys most affected by the floods.The conservative minister is being targeted by a debate on the possible failure of warning systems to the population in the face of the deadly floods. Germany is still in shock over the largest natural disaster in the country's recent history. On Sunday, Chancellor Angela Merkel visited the village of Schuld, not far from Bonn, where the river Ahr, transformed into a raging torrent, destroyed part of the historic center.
The German language has difficulty finding words to describe the devastation caused, the chancellor said, describing a surreal devastation and promising the support of the federal state. On Wednesday, the government will present an emergency aid package of at least 300 million euros, before a vast reconstruction program of several billion euros. Global warming has been blamed by experts and politicians alike. Merkel called on Sunday for a very big effort to speed up climate policies.