UAE sends relief to victims of Iranian floods

The Emirates Red Crescent in co-ordination with Saudi Arabia has sent 95 tonnes of aid to Tehran

A helicopter carrying aid arrives at the flooded village of Bamdezh in Iran's Khuzestan province on April 4, 2019. Iranian authorities ordered the evacuation of six cities along the Karkheh river in southwestern Khuzestan province on April 5, after more rain sparked fears of new flooding, state news agency IRNA said. / AFP / TASNIM NEWS / MEHDI PEDRAMKHOO
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The UAE sent a relief plane to Iran on Wednesday to help those affected by the flooding that has devastated the south-western area of the country.

At least 76 people have died since March 31 as a result of flooding caused by the worst rain in Iran for at least a decade.

It has forced more than 220,000 into emergency shelters and caused an estimated $2.5 billion in damage to roads, bridges, homes and farmland.

The situation was exacerbated by floodwater rushing down from the north.

“A plane carrying 95 ton of relief items was sent to Tehran today following the directions of President Sheikh Khalifa and Sheikh Mohamad bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, and Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai,” the UAE news agency Wam said.

The Emirates Red Crescent, in co-ordination with its Saudi counterpart, announced an initiative on Friday they said would "ease the suffering of Iranian citizens affected by the devastating flash floods that recently hit Iran".

The relief includes food and shelter items such as tents and clothing, said a Red Crescent statement.

A joint statement issued by the relief organisations said the operation is being undertaken within the framework of Islamic brotherhood and in solidarity with the Iranian people.

This week, Iranian authorities ordered scores of villages to be evacuated as the effects of severe flooding spread further across the country – affecting 20 of the country's 31 provinces.

Many residents of Susangerd, with a population of about 50,000, and five other communities in the oil-producing province of Khuzestan were being moved to safer areas as officials released water from major dams, state TV reported.

"An evacuation order has been issued and we are recommending women and children leave but we are asking the men and youth to stay and help us build floodwalls so we can keep the water out of these cities," the provincial governor, Gholamreza Shariati, told state TV.

The governor said the flooding was the worst in 70 years.