Society 17:07 04/06/2024 Armenia

Switzerland deploys specialists to flood-hit northern Armenia

Heavy rain has caused flooding in northern Armenia, leading to considerable loss of life and destruction of property. Water and mud levels reached almost two metres in some areas and destroyed a large number of homes and infrastructure. At the request of the Armenian authorities, Switzerland is deploying specialists from the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit to the affected areas. In particular, they will be responsible for assessing the structural soundness of bridges and other infrastructure. Switzerland has earmarked up to CHF 500,000 to support efforts on the ground, the Swiss Embassy in Yerevan reports.

Flooding caused by heavy rainfall has led to considerable loss of life and destruction of property in several areas of northern Armenia. More than 400 people have had to be evacuated and a wide range of infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, including roads, bridges and gas and water pipes. In some villages, buildings collapsed and mud and water levels reached almost two metres. In view of the scale of the disaster, the Armenian authorities have requested assistance through the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism (EUCPM), with a particular emphasis on civil engineers.

Switzerland immediately responded by offering assistance in this area, and the Armenian authorities have now confirmed their acceptance and interest. The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is deploying an seven-strong team from the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SHA) that includes structural engineers and technicians.The team left Switzerland for Armenia last night and will support the Armenian authorities in assessing the structural soundness of bridges and other damaged infrastructure.

The SDC, which is already active in Armenia and other parts of the South Caucasus, has earmarked up to CHF 500,000 to support the emergency response in the affected areas, which are among the most disadvantaged in the country. Switzerland is also monitoring the flooding situation in Europe, particularly in neighbouring states. It stands ready to offer its assistance to countries that request it.



Source Panorama.am
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