Death toll from Bulgaria floods rises to 13

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The death toll from flooding triggered by torrential rains in Bulgaria’s northeastern regions has risen to 13, as the government declares a national day of mourning.

Bulgarian officials said Friday that at least 12 people have died after heavy rain hit the region.

Three bodies were recovered earlier in the day in the northern city of Dobrich after torrential rains caused tremendous floods in the city, Mayor Detelina Nikolova said.

Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev confirmed that 10 bodies, including two children, had been recovered from floodwaters in the city’s low-lying district of Asparuhovo.

Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski, along with Yovchev, arrived at the worst-hit Black Sea resort town of Varna, where the premier called the flooding “a huge tragedy.”

Authorities have declared a state of emergency in the affected areas and the government announced that a national day of mourning is to be held on June 23.

According to authorities, the death toll is expected to rise, as it was unclear how many more people were missing.

Large parts of the Balkan country have been hit by heavy rain and hailstorms, and hundreds of people have been cut off from electricity and food supplies.

Thunderstorms and torrential rains have hit areas near the capital of Sofia, flooding roads and damaging houses in several villages.

The national meteorological service said rainfall in eastern Bulgaria in the past 24 hours equaled the average amount for a month, and warned that more rain was expected in the coming days.

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