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Death toll from Idai rises to 293: Mozambican PM - Xinhua | E

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BEIRA, March 22 (Xinhua) -- Mozambican Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario said on Friday at Beira International Airport in central coastal region of the country that death toll caused by the cyclone Idai has reached 293.

The prime minister briefed the press at the emergency operation center set at the airport saying that the disaster was catastrophic and the number of people affected was estimated at about 345,000.

All the figures are preliminary and the authorities are working to have the real number, said the premier, who added that the challenge is to find more shelters for displaced people accommodated in schools to allow students to return to their classes next week.

The premier said the next step for the homeless people staying in the temporary accommodation centers is to move them to transition centers from where they will later be transferred to the final shelters.

According to the premier, another concern is the food security as many crops were destroyed in different districts, particularly maize, which the population will need to use as main food to feed themselves.

The premier said the top priority is to unite efforts to save lives and assist people in need of basic goods, water and food.

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