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Landslide buries bus in Colombia, at least 33 dead – government

landslide buries bus in pueblo rico, colombia
Police help the rescue operations of a bus that was buried after a landslide due to heavy rains in Pueblo Rico, Colombia December 4, 2022. Colombia National Police/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES. MANDATORY CREDIT

At least 33 people died when a landslide buried a bus in northwestern Colombia on Sunday, and nine have been rescued alive, the interior minister said.

The landslide, caused by strong rains, hit the vehicle between the villages of Pueblo Rico and Santa Cecilia in Risaralda province, about 230 km (140 miles) northwest of the capital Bogota.

“We have already found 33 people dead, including three minors, and we have rescued nine people alive, four of them are in a critical condition,” Interior Minister Alfonso Prada told reporters on Monday.

Colombia’s President Gustavo Petro described the incident as a tragedy in a Twitter message.

“Solidarity with the families of the victims,” Petro said, pledging support from the national government.

Pueblo Rico Mayor Leonardo Fabio Siagama told reporters that bodies were being brought to a covered stadium in the town that is normally used for sport.

The bus was traveling from Cali, Colombia’s third largest city, to the municipality of Condoto, in Choco province.

Colombia had been hit by an unusually heavy rainy season, blamed on the La Nina weather phenomenon.

Events linked to heavy rains have killed more than 216 people and left 538,000 homeless so far in 2022, according to government statistics. Another 48 people are still missing across the country, the figures show.

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