German flood devastation as ‘terrifying’: Merkel
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has described the flooding that ravaged parts of her country as “surreal” and “terrifying”, as the death toll from floods in Western Europe climbed above 180 with dozens still missing.
Merkel promised on Sunday swift financial aid after visiting one of the areas worst affected by the record rainfall and floods that have killed at least 157 people in Germany alone in recent days, in the country’s worst natural disaster in almost six decades.
“It is terrifying,” she told residents of the small town of Adenau in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, one of the two hardest-hit regions in western Germany. “The German language can barely describe the devastation that’s taken place.”
“Germany is a strong country,” Merkel said. “We will stand up to this force of nature, in the short term, but also in the medium and long term.”
Merkel toured Schuld, a village on a tight curve of the Ahr River in western Germany where many buildings were damaged or destroyed by rapidly rising floodwaters on Wednesday night. Authorities said some people are still missing and they fear the toll may still rise.