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Brazil flooding kills at least 39 people

Source: Reuters - Thu, 26 Dec 2013 21:42 PM
Author: Reuters
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Intense rains, flash flooding, and mudslides have killed at least 39 people in Brazil.

A state of emergency has been called in parts of the country -- still reeling from heavy rains that began last week.

The National Guard and Army have been called in to assist in rescue efforts.

Mudslides have completely destroyed homes -- with some residents buried alive.

One father was able to save his daughter and another trapped girl.

LOCAL RESIDENT RESPONSIBLE FOR SAVING TWO CHILDREN THAT WERE BURIED, LEANDRO, SAYING:

"When I heard a noise, there was no more time for anything. I was pushing against the wall but got buried as well. I managed to find a piece of wood and grab onto it so I could pull my body free. I heard my daughter asking for help and when I freed her I heard another girl crying for help. I got her out as well."

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff says saving lives is the top priority.

BRAZILIAN PRESIDENT DILMA ROUSSEFF, SAYING:

"You have to save people and then guarantee them shelter. This is what you do in when confronting a disaster. The first and most important priority, that which is most precious is human life. That's what we worry about saving first."

Many families have lost everything -- with some 50,000 people now displaced

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