Papua New Guinea survivors at risk amid hampered relief supply deliveries

An official with an international aid organization says efforts to get rescue personnel and relief supplies to the site of Friday's deadly landslide in Papua New Guinea are being hampered.

Crowds of mourners have been gathering in the northern province of Enga. So far, the remains of six people have been recovered but the government says the death toll could reach at least 2,000, far higher than the over 670 estimate by a UN agency.

Igarashi Maki, the country head of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, told NHK that the rescue and relief operations are being slowed down because the main highway and other roads are still blocked, and because of the risk of further landslides.

She is also worried about support for the survivors, saying that there will be issues dealing with malnutrition and infectious diseases.
She added it is important that the survivors are provided with mental health care because of the "unimaginable devastation" caused to their community.

The UN says the total number of affected people including those who will need to be evacuated and relocated could reach nearly 8,000 based on 2022 data.
It says around 40 percent of the population is under the age of 16.