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Violent Storm Kills Eight in Eastern Ethiopia


Officials in eastern Ethiopia say eight people have been killed by a violent rainstorm in a town that is still recovering from last month's devastating floods.

A police official Thursday said seven people in Dire Dawa were killed Wednesday when their house collapsed as a result of high winds and heavy rain. Another person was electrocuted by a fallen powerline.

The deaths come one month after 256 people were killed in Dire Dawa because of intense flooding.

Earlier Thursday, the United Nations said more than 350,000 Ethiopians have been affected by the floods.

That is about three times the estimate of 118.000 released by the U.N.'s World Food Program in late August.

Thursday's report from the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says 136,000 people have lost their homes in the flooding.

U.N. officials say the floods were especially devastating to the northern Amhara region, where nearly 100,000 people have been affected, including 37,000 who have been displaced.

The report says the heavy rains have expanded Lake Tana in the north by 50 meters, increasing the risk of further flooding.

Last month's floods killed at least 639 people nationwide.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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