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14 killed, 1,500 fishermen missing in Bangladesh storm

12 October, 2012

DHAKA: At least 14 people were killed and an estimated 1,500 fishermen are missing after tropical storms smashed into Bangladesh's southern coastal islands and districts early on Thursday, police said.

Police said at least 1,500 mud, tin and straw-built houses were also levelled in the storms that swept Bhola, Hatiya and Sandwip islands and half a dozen coastal districts after Wednesday midnight.

At the worst-hit island of Hatiya, at least five people were killed after they were buried under their houses or hit by fallen trees, said local police chief Moktar Hossain. More than 1,000 houses were flattened.

"More than 100 fishing trawlers, each carrying at least 10 fishermen, have been missing since the storm," he told AFP, calling it one of the most powerful in decades.

Many fishermen are expected to have taken shelter in other remote islands in the Bay of Bengal or in the neighbouring Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest. Four people were killed in Bhola, three in Sandwip and two at Char Jabbar, police said.

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