At least 12 people were killed and 24 others are listed as missing in the floods in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, where residents were warned to stay indoors because zoo animals are on the loose after the rising waters destroyed their enclosures.
Bears, lions, tigers and wolves are roaming the capital’s streets, officials said.
“We still have to capture some animals. I want to ask residents to avoid going into the streets unless it’s absolutely necessary,” Tbilisi Mayor Davit Narmania said.
Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili expressed his condolences to the families of the flood victims and declared a national day of mourning for Monday.
Security forces members and emergency services personnel are searching for the 24 missing people and trying to track down the wild animals roaming Tbilisi’s streets.
Many residents of downtown Tbilisi, where the zoo is located, are afraid to venture into the streets for fear of encountering one of the 30 animals that escaped from the wildlife facility, an Efe reporter confirmed.
“The situation is complicated.
“La situación es compleja. Tbilisi has not experienced a natural disaster of these proportions,” Garibashvili said. EFE