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Children and teachers killed in Jordan flash flood

Children and teachers killed in Jordan flash flood

State media report that Jordan's King Abdullah II has cancelled a trip to Bahrain to follow the rescue operations.

An official at Jordan´s education ministry said the school had received permission around a week ago to visit Al-Azraq, the site of a nature reserve east of Amman. In a message on his Twitter account, the monarch said that "the pain of each father, mother and family is my pain".

"My sorrow and pain are severe and great, and I am only as angry with all those who failed to take action that could have prevented this painful incident", he said.

Another 35 people were injured following heavy rains on Thursday, including members of the security forces involved in rescue operations, a civil defence official told AFP, updating earlier tolls.

The monarch later chaired a meeting of the National Policies Council, a group of high-level officials.

Extensive rescue efforts were underway in the area. In April, 10 Israeli students were killed in a flash flood while on a hiking trip near the Dead Sea.

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Jordanians on social media and radio derided the school, even flooding its Facebook page with comments such as "school or graveyard?", calling its administration "reckless" and warning that "the fate of these children and what they had suffered will haunt you to your graves".

He reportedly instructed state agencies to provide all needed assistance to ensure the safety of the students. But how many schoolchildren have died after flash floods hit families having picnic?

The Jordanian Prime Minister Omar al-Razaz said an investigation is underway to find out what happened.

There have been deadly incidents involving flash floods in Jordan in the past and in 1963, 23 French tourists were swept away by flash floods when they were trapped in the ancient Petra city.

The region was bracing on Thursday for the first winter storms after the summer, with heavy rainfall and high winds expected.


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