Mozambique began mourning its dead on Wednesday after catastrophic cyclone winds and flooding left hundreds of people dead as well as a trail of unprecedented destruction. The 3-day national mourning will end on Friday.
Cylone Idai hit Mozambique’s port city of Beira on Thursday last week and moved inland before spreading to Zimbabwe and Malawi where hundreds of people were also killed.
The 170 kilometer per hour (105 mile per hour) winds submerged entire villages in Mozambique, cut roads and left many stranded without food, with the country’s President initially saying that as many as a thousand people may have died.
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On Tuesday, President Filipe Nyusi of Mozambique corrected himself, saying that cyclone Idai had killed more than 200 people in the southern African country with more bodies being discovered.
In neighboring Zimbabwe, the government said the cyclone had killed 98 people but the final death toll was likely to be higher. It was a similar story in Malawi.
The European Union on Tuesday donated an initial emergency aid package of 3.5 million euros ($3.97 million) to Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.
Britain and the United States have also promised to help. In a statement, the United States Embassy in Mozambique said it was mobilizing to support Mozambique.