Japan landslide: 20 missing in Atami city

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Twenty people are missing in central Japan after a huge landslide hit Atami city following heavy rainfall.

Video on social media showed a torrent of black mud plummeting down from a mountain top and on through the city towards the sea. Several houses were destroyed or buried.

Two bodies have been found by the coast guard, the local governor said.

A resident said he heard a “horrible sound” and fled as the landslide engulfed everything in its path.

Atami, a popular hot-spring resort in the prefecture of Shizuoka, has had more rainfall in the first three days of July than it usually sees in the whole month.

The weather has been similar in neighbouring Kanagawa prefecture.

Japan is a very mountainous and densely populated country and landslides are not unusual, says the BBC’s Rupert Wingfield-Hayes in Tokyo.

But there is growing evidence that climate change is making these sorts of extreme weather events more frequent and more destructive, our correspondent adds. (BBC)

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