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Serbia declares national mourning for flood victims

Serbia declares national mourning for flood victims
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The Serbian government has declared three days of mourning for the victims of the disastrous flooding.

Worst-hit is the town of Obrenovac near Belgrade, where flooding from the Sava river has been aggravated by overflow from the Danube.

Fourteen people died there as the waters rose.

Some 15,000, the majority of the town’s population, had to leave their homes.

Co-ordinating the response to the floods from Belgrade, the Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said many people had died and as the waters receded, the number would certainly be higher.

Declaring three days of mourning, he said the state of emergency might be lifted in the coming days, but problems would remain in some towns.

The prime minister has also called for more international help, saying there was a particular need for food, bottled water and clothes.

In Obrenovac the few who remain face an uncertain and difficult future.

“There will be no life here for months to come. The only people who can live here now are the ones living on the higher floors of buildings, but the people who live on the ground floors can’t live here anymore,” said local resident Mihajlo Tomic.

Although the weather has improved, flooding is expected to continue in the Belgrade area in the coming days.

Reporting from Obrenovac, Euronews correspondent Andrea Hajagos said:

“It is clear that the water level has decreased; a couple of days ago the bridge here was completely submerged. But even if the situation is improving, the fact is that this town has never seen such a devastating flood.”