ISLAMABAD – The U.N. food agency estimates that torrential rains in Afghanistan have left more than 300 dead and thousands of homes destroyed, mostly in the northern province of Baghlan.

Among the dead are at least 51 children, according to UNICEF, one of several international agencies that are sending equipment, medicines, blankets and other supplies. The World Health Organization announced it sent 7 tons of medicines and emergency health kits.

The Save the Children group said that some 600,000 people, about half of them children, are living in five districts of Baghlan heavily affected by the floods. It added that it had sent a mobile clinic with health and child care specialists to support the children and their families.

“There are lives and livelihoods that have been completely washed away,” said Arshad Malik, country director of Save the Children. “The floods wiped out villages, washing away houses and carrying away livestock. There are children who lost everything. There are families who, still affected by the economic impact of three years of drought, need urgent help.”

He added that Afghanistan is a country that is not prepared to deal with the effects of climate change, such as heavier seasonal rains, and needs help from the international community.

At least 70 people were killed in April by rains and floods in the country. The floods also destroyed some 2,000 homes, three mosques and four schools.

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