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Thousands Battle Flooding In Russia's Far East

The floods in Russia's Far East have been caused by a month of unusually heavy rain.
Around 17,000 people have left their homes in Russia's Far East near the border with China as the region sees its worst flooding in 120 years.

Russian media said as many as 100,000 people may have to be evacuated if the floods get worse.

In a video-conference broadcast on state television on August 17, Emergency Situations Minister Vladimir Puchkov told President Vladimir Putin that about 5,300 homes in more than 120 communities had been swamped by the flooding.

The floods were caused by a month of unusually heavy rain.

Officials said on August 17 that the water level in the Amur and other local rivers was rising rapidly.

The head of Russia's hydrometeorology monitoring service said the floods were not expected to start receding until early September.

Based on reporting by Reuters, dpa, and Interfax