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Monday, April 2, 2012

Tourists flee in frantic scenes as devastating floods hit Fiji

A tropical cyclone is expected to miss Fiji today but will continue to bring heavy rainfall, strong winds and damaging swells to the flooded South Pacific nation, a meteorologist says, as the Fijian government lifted its ban on flights carrying inbound passengers.

At least three people have died and about 8000 Fijians have been relocated to emergency evacuation centres, Agence France-Presse reported.

Tourists were also stranded after a tropical storm inundated Fiji, flooding properties and roads.

Foreign Minister Bob Carr says Qantas will increase capacity to ensure stranded Australians can get home.

He said he spoke with the airline's chief executive Alan Joyce, who told him, "Qantas will add capacity as required".

International Federation of Red Cross shelter and disaster management delegate David O'Meara told smh.com.au on the phone from Fiji's capital Suva.

"The flooding comes on top of the earlier flooding in January and is more extensive. ... It's all through the west and up in the north."

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/tourists-flee-in-frantic-scenes-as-devastating-floods-hit-fiji-20120402-1w73h.html#ixzz1qtRK30hu

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