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Japan PM Abe visits Hiroshima after killer landslides

Published on Aug 25, 2014 12:40 PM
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (right) inspects a landslide site which killed 52 people and 28 others are missing in Hiroshima, western Japan on Aug 25, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Monday pledged full support for victims of last week's massive landslides in Hiroshima, as he made his first visit since the disaster to the western Japan city.

The death toll from the mudslides, which buried dozens of homes, rose to 52, with a further 28 people missing as of Monday, according to Hiroshima police.

Some 3,000 rescuers, including soldiers, were continuing to dig through mud and debris at the various sites on the outskirts of the city, but their round-the-clock search was occasionally hampered as fresh rain stoked fears of more disasters.

"The government wants to closely coordinate with the local authority," said Abe, who wore the light blue two-piece protective clothing politicians usually don during disasters to signify they are part of the recovery effort.

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