Cyclone Mekunu Hits Southern Oman, Kills Two

Cyclone tears through Yemeni island Socotra

Bangladesh has sought India's support in rescuing its nationals if anybody is found in danger, as a powerful cyclone struck Oman's Salalah city killing killed at least three people including a 12-year-old girl. The waves ate into one tourist beach, and toppled thatch umbrellas cemented into the sand.

Yet even as Mekunu barreled overhead, the eye of the storm provided a moment's respite early Saturday morning.

Embassy officials visited a camp at Taqah in Salalah and arranged food for 460 people (145 Indians and 315 Bangladeshi nationals). They laughed and shared plates by flashlight in a darkened ballroom, the cyclone's wind a boring roar behind their clatter.

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Salalah Port Services Co said that operations at the port had been halted because of the damage caused by the cyclone and that it would take a minimum of 72 hours to "make the port safe".

Across Salalah, branches and leaves littered the streets. Several underpasses became standing lakes and cars were left abandoned on the road.

In Salalah, the heavy rain had nearly stopped on Saturday, an AFP photographer said, but many streets were still under water and nearby valleys were flooded.

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Yemeni officials also reported damage in the country's far east, along the border with Oman. The city is partially de-energized electrical trying to fix power lines.

Authorities remained anxious about flash flooding in the area's valleys and potential mudslides down its nearby cloud-shrouded mountains.

The moist air mass will also lead to thunder showers and winds, causing blowing sand and dust, especially over the southern parts of the country. As a result, beginning may 26, the storm has already killed at least 6 and lost more than 40 people, including foreigners.

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He told AFP that authorities have recovered the bodies of the five Yemeni nationals and two Indians and were still searching for the remaining 12.

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