Flooding in Northeastern Ethiopia Displaces Nearly 20,000

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) -- An official in Ethiopia's northeastern Afar region says heavy flooding has displaced some 20,000 people from their homes.

“The flooding has caused damages to properties and killed several dozens of animals,” Kulsuma Burhaba Ali, deputy head of the region's disaster prevention department, told the state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporate. “The flooding was caused as the Awash River overflows and affected 10 out of 17 counties in the region.”

There was no word of any deaths.

The official said an additional 51,000 people are in danger, but efforts are underway including airlifts by Ethiopia's military.

Photos posted on social media show residents surrounded by fast-flowing waters and attempting to save their animals.

Ethiopia's Afar region is mostly inhabited by nomadic herders and is home to the Danakil Depression, a popular tourist area that has been called the hottest place on Earth.