A deadly landslide in the northwest northwestern Democratic Republic of the Congo has claimed the lives of 17 people.

The death toll from landslide, caused by torrential rains, is expected to rise as rescuers sift through mud and the rubble of collapsed homes.

According to Al Jazeera, The disaster took place on Sunday along the Congo River in the town of Lisal in Mongala province. The victims lived in homes that were built at the foot of a mountain.

The Governor said machinery was desperately needed to help clear away the debris and try to save any survivors. He offered his condolences to the victims’ families and decreed three days of mourning throughout the province.

Poverty and poor infrastructure have made communities in such areas more vulnerable to extreme weather such as heavy rains, which are becoming more frequent and intense in Africa due to climate change, United Nations climate experts said.

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