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7/25/2007

Devastated China Braces for More Storms

China
Photo: Three Chinese paramilitary officers struggle in flood waters during rescue efforts in Hami, northwestern China's Xinjiang province.

BEIJING, July 23--Storms are expected to batter large swathes of China again this week after floods, landslides and lightning killed more than 150 people last week alone, state media said.

Flooding and typhoons killed 2,704 people last year, according to the China Meteorological Administration. That was the second-deadliest year on record after 1998, when summer floods killed 4,150.

Since the start of the annual rainy season in May, floods have hit nearly half of China and killed at least 400 people, Xinhua news agency said.

State television on Sunday showed President Hu Jintao slogging through Chongqing's flooded streets in black galoshes and visiting residents whose homes had been inundated.
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