Papua New Guinea Landslide Leaves Hundreds Dead and Missing


Hundreds of individuals are dead and missing following a devastating landslide in Papua New Guinea, which buried over 2,000 residents.

The landslide took place on Friday, but government officials arrived at the disaster site on Sunday and reported an estimated death toll of 670, a figure likely to increase as rescue teams sift through the debris.

The calamity struck at 3 a.m., catching many residents during their sleep, which exacerbated the tragedy.

In a letter to the United Nations, Lusete Laso Mana, a national disaster center official, stated that rescue operations have been challenging due to unstable ground conditions, as reported by the New York Times. Mana indicated that there is a continuing threat to both rescue teams and survivors.

“The landslide entombed over 2,000 people and inflicted severe damage on buildings, food gardens, and significantly affected the country’s economic lifeline,” Mana wrote.

Beyond those trapped, the U.N. estimated that 250 additional homes have been deserted due to fears of more landslides, displacing approximately 1,250 residents.

“This situation demands immediate action and international assistance to prevent further losses and deliver essential aid to those impacted,” stated Anne Mandal, a representative for the U.N.’s International Organization for Migration.

The White House also expressed its condolences to those affected by the landslide. In a statement, President Joe Biden mentioned that he and First Lady Jill Biden were “heartbroken” over the fatalities.

“Our prayers are with all the families affected by this tragedy and all the first responders who are risking their own lives to assist their fellow citizens,” Biden said.

Zachary Halaschak
Zachary Halaschak
Economics Reporter. Before moving to Washington, he worked in Alaska, covering politics, government, and crime for the Ketchikan Daily News. While there, Zach won the Alaska Press Club’s second-place award for best reporting on crime or courts for his coverage of a local surgeon’s alleged murder. He graduated from the University of Richmond and is originally from Florida.

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