Scores dead in recent SE Asia flooding

Scores dead in recent SE Asia flooding
A Cambodian girl rows her boat through flood waters at a village in Kandal province on October 7, 2013.

PHNOM PENH - More than 150 people have died in floods drenching swathes of Southeast Asia in recent weeks, officials said Monday, after a tree smashed into a 12th century temple at Cambodia's Angkor complex.

Heavy rains have waterlogged homes and farmland across the region as recent typhoons worsened the annual rainy season.

In Cambodia, the death toll from floods since mid-September stood at 83 on Monday, nearly half of them children, according to the National Disaster Management Committee.

More than 10,000 families have been evacuated, while hundreds of schools and dozens of homes have been deluged.

Heavy rain and strong wind also uprooted a 30 metre (100 foot) tree and sent it crashing into the ancient Preah Khan temple in the country's famed Angkor complex in northeastern Siem Reap province on Friday.

"The tree knocked part of the temple structure, causing some stones to fall off. But the temple itself did not collapse," said Im Sokrithy of the Apsara Authority which manages the World Heritage archaeological site.

In Thailand authorities said 34 people have been killed and 1.9 million have seen their homes or livelihoods damaged by the flooding.

Typhoon Wutip left a trail of destruction in Vietnam in late September, with high winds that ripped the roofs off nearly 200,000 houses according to state media. The country has seen some 40 deaths in flooding since early September.

Cambodia's floods have prompted the government again to cancel the annual water festival in front of the royal palace in Phnom Penh.

The festival, which usually draws millions of people, was also cancelled in 2011 and 2012, due to severe floods and the death of former King Norodom Sihanouk respectively.

More than 350 people were killed in a stampede on a bridge during the water festival celebration in 2010.

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