President Sheikh Khalifa orders urgent relief for Sierra Leone

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The mudslides began Monday following heavy rains that collapsed a hillside and washed away homes built precariously atop it. At the city's overwhelmed Connaught Hospital morgue, many bodies were too mangled and decomposed to be identified. The prediction is that we are expecting more rain in the next couple of days.

"People here have already experienced so much trauma having lived through war and then Ebola, and now this", she said.

"We are also fearful of outbreaks of diseases such as cholera and typhoid", he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation from Freetown.

"We are going to open churches to provide shelter. It is a race against time and the resources that are available", he said. A national emergency has been called, with more rainfall forecast over the weekend.

"My thoughts and prayers go out to the families who lost loved ones". The country's President Ernest Bai Koroma visited Israel in January. Authorities did not have an updated death toll on Wednesday. Many were trapped under tons of mud as they slept.

Rescue workers told CNN they were losing hope of finding whole bodies in the debris.

Aid agencies warned that corpses trapped in the mud are likely to contaminate water sources and cause outbreaks of disease, but continuous rain has made the search hard and unsafe. A woman who spoke to ABC News said that she lost at least 28 family members in this mudslide.

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Another resident, Ishmael Tomboyeke, said he was looking for his sister's body.

WFP country director Housainou Taal said in a statement that the mudslides had left a path of death and devastation.

Residents stand near an ambulance after a mudslide in the mountain town of Regent, Sierra Leone, August 14, 2017.

"There is frustration with the regularity of the flooding and destruction during the rainy season", noted Ms. Fox. Devastating floods are now an annual occurrence in the country's capital.

United Nations spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in NY the United Nations country team was "supporting national authorities in rescue operations, helping evacuate residents, providing medical assistance to the injured, registering survivors, and providing food rations, water and dignity kits to those affected".

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip have expressed their sadness over the incident.