Iran moved on Saturday to evacuate more towns and villages threatened by floods after continued rain in the southwest of the country, state television reported, as the nationwide toll from the flooding reached 70.
Many residents of Susangerd, with a population of about 50,000, and five other communities in the oil-rich southwestern 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 to 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 inflow into the Karkheh river dam has been high ... and officials have had to release more water as the dam was approaching its full capacity,” Shariati said, adding the flooding was the worst in 70 years.
Rains were expected to end in Khuzestan by Monday, state TV said.
In the neighboring Lorestan province, seven villages threatened by landslides were to be evacuated, state TV said.
At least 70 people have been killed, the head of the country’s emergency services,