|October 29, 2008||Permalink|
Last weekend heavy storms crashed through Yemen, one of the poorest countries in the world. The wind, rain and lightning killed a number people initiallly, but the subsequent flooding took a much larger toll, in both lives and property. The hard-hit Hadramaut region is home to the ancient walled city of Shibam, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, nicknamed the "Manhattan of the desert". The structures in Shibam and neighboring villages are mud-brick construction, and were damaged badly by the rain and flooding, many collapsing when their foundations were undercut. The World Health Organization has estimated that 180 people have died, mostly in building collapses, though that number is likely to change as debris is cleared away. (22 photos total)
A file photo from April 2007 handed out by the Aga Khan Award for architecture shows the ancient city of Shibam, Yemen, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and and one of three major urban centres in Wadi Hadramaut. Heavy rains swept through Yemen's southeastern province of Hadramaut, which has now been declared a disaster zone, local officials said on October 24,2008. (ANNE DE HENNING/AFP/Getty Images)
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