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  Monday, November 11, 2019
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The death toll from the devastating landslide in a densely populated
The death toll from the devastating landslide in a densely populated Cairo shanty town has reached 61, with 58 people rescued from beneath the rubble, the country's Health Ministry said Wednesday.

On Saturday morning, hundreds of tons of rock tumbled down Muqattam hill onto one of Cairo's poorest and most densely populated areas, trapping more than 500 people.

Rescuers cleared a route on Monday through narrow streets to bring bulldozers and other heavy equipment to the area. The rescue operation is continuing although hopes of finding more survivors are fading.

Cairo's governor, Abdel Azim Wazir, said some 2,000 homes would be made available for shanty town residents who lost their homes, as per President Hosni Mubarak's instructions. The displaced people are currently staying in tent camps.

Preliminary reports said the rocks could have been dislodged by leaks from an improvised sewage system that gradually eroded parts of the limestone mountain. Another theory contends the disaster was caused by construction work on top of Muqattam.

Opposition parties and other organizations have criticized the government over the handling of the rescue operation. Locals have also staged protests against a government decision to demolish all undamaged dwellings in the area amid fears that other rock falls might follow.


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