Iran's floods kill at least three: reports

TEHERAN: Floods in southern Iran killed at least three people and left hundreds of villages cut off after heavy rains, official media reported Tuesday.

So far three people have been confirmed dead and one has been reported missing, reported Press TV, the English television service of state television, on its website.

Rescuers used boats and helicopters to provide help after flood waters cut off access to urban areas in the provinces of Hormozgan, Kerman and Sistan-Baluchistan, state news agency IRNA said.

So far they have not been able to reach the city of Qasr-e Qand and 40 surrounding villages in Sistan-Baluchistan, said Governor Rahimbaksh Pakandish, quoted by IRNA.

Five hundred villages were affected and thousands of homes destroyed or damaged in the southeastern province, IRNA reported, adding that 285 families received emergency shelter at Red Crescent stores.

More than 20,000 people in the villages of the Sistan-Baluchistan province have lost their homes due to flooding or are surrounded by water, said Deputy Minister of Health, Alireza Raisi.

The Revolutionary Guard distributed 1,000 packages of food to those affected, IRNA said.

In Kerman province, roads were cut and 40 villages were damaged, while 61 people were rescued in Hormozgan province.

The amount of rain that fell in the southwestern province of Hormozgan since Friday was unprecedented, the semi-official ISNA news agency reported. Flood waters had surrounded more than 50 villages in it.

Unprecedented floods are devastating the province of Sistan and Balochistan of Iran, with significant human and material costs, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted Monday night.

The flood disaster is the worst in Iran as at least 70 people were killed in 20 provinces in April.