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20 Dead in French Flash Floods


The death toll from flash floods in southern France has risen to 20, while authorities near the country's Mediterranean coast continue to search for bodies.

After two days of flooding, a fresh round of rainfall early Thursday brought waters to about one-half meter high in France's southern Var region. At least 25,000 homes were without electricity in what French Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux called an "unprecedented catastrophe."

Rescue helicopters on Wednesday plucked hundreds of people off their rooftops.

French officials say the government has made more than $1 million available for emergency efforts. French President Nicolas Sarkozy announced plans to visit the Var region next week.

French media say these are France's worst floods in 200 years.


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

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