Floods paralyse Jakarta, triggering mass evacuation, killing at least 4
JAKARTA (AP) - Seasonal rains triggered massive flooding in Indonesia's capital on Thursday, killing at least four people, triggering the evacuation of at least 20,000 and paralysing much of the city.
Floods regularly hit parts of Jakarta in the rainy season, but the inundation following an intense rain storm was especially widespread. Few areas of the city of 14 million people were spared, with water levels up to two metres-high in some places. The main street through the city's business district was under around 50 centimetres of water, while waters also rushed into the presidential palace.
Traffic ground to a halt as floodwater washed into homes, offices, schools and roads. Most businesses did not open due to a lack of staff.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and his foreign minister Marty Natalegawa were pictured standing in water up to their shins at the palace waiting for the arrival of Argentina's President Christina Kirchner, who is on a state visit. The meeting of the two leaders apparently went ahead.