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Over 200,000 affected by floods

world Updated: Nov 08, 2009 17:06 IST

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The number of flood-victims in the rain-soaked Mexican Gulf coast states of Tabasco and Veracruz has risen to 206,000, an official said.

In Tabasco, the most affected area, the number of people whose homes have been flooded due to heavy rains has climbed from 79,000 to 200,000, Governor Andres Granier said on Friday.

"There are more than 200,000 Tabasco residents who are in a desperate situation at the moment and, of course, I'm worried about this," Granier said during a public event.

Official reports indicate that crops over some 60,000 acres of land have been destroyed by the flooding in two municipalities of that southeastern state, where heavy rains two years ago left 80 percent of the state under water and killed more than two dozen people.

After rivers in the Tabasco towns of Cardenas and Huimanguillo burst their banks, the state government said the agricultural zone known as "El Plan Chontalpa" is practically "broken" and that rice, sugarcane, pineapple and lemon crops have been lost.

"The situation is serious. Crops have been lost and federal government funds are needed to cope with the crisis," Granier said.

"Soon we'll know the extent of the losses, and that won't be until the water retreats," said the leader in Tabasco of the National Peasants' Confederation, or CNC, Juan Jose Cadenas.

The Tabasco Agriculture Secretariat said that at least 24,690 acres of pastureland have been flooded and that ranchers have been forced to move more than 40,000 head of cattle to higher ground.

"If the cattle keeps getting thinner, we'll lose a lot of (those animals)," a source with that department told EFE.