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Italian rescuers are searching for those missing after a landslide on the island

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For a second day on Sunday, rescuers dug through the mud in search of people who died in a huge landslide on the Italian resort island of Ischia.

APTOPIX Italy Landslide An aerial view of damaged houses after heavy rain triggered landslides that collapsed buildings and left 12 people missing in Casamicciola, on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. Authorities said the landslide early Saturday buildings destroyed and parked cars washed into the sea, one person dead and 12 missing.

AP Photo/Salvatore Laporta

Italy Landslide An aerial view of damaged houses after heavy rain triggered landslides that collapsed buildings and left 12 people missing in Casamicciola, on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. Authorities said the landslide early Saturday buildings destroyed and parked cars washed into the sea, one person dead and 12 missing.

AP Photo/Salvatore Laporta

Italy Landslide An aerial view of damaged houses after heavy rain triggered landslides that collapsed buildings and left 12 people missing in Casamicciola, on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. Authorities said the landslide early Saturday buildings destroyed and parked cars washed into the sea, one person dead and 12 missing.

AP Photo/Salvatore Laporta

APTOPIX Italy Landslide A caterpillar removes dirt and debris after heavy rainfall triggered landslides that collapsed buildings and left about 12 people missing, in Casamicciola on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. Authorities said the landslide early Saturday buildings destroyed and parked cars washed into the sea, one person dead and 12 missing.

AP Photo/Salvatore Laporta

Italy Landslide An aerial view of damaged houses after heavy rain triggered landslides that collapsed buildings and left 12 people missing in Casamicciola, on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. Authorities said the landslide early Saturday buildings destroyed and parked cars washed into the sea, one person dead and 12 missing.

AP Photo/Salvatore Laporta

MILAN (AP) — Rescue workers dug through the mud for a second day Sunday in search of people missing after a huge landslide hit the Italian resort island of Ischia.

One body was found on Saturday and about a dozen people, including children, are still missing in the port city of Casamicciola, feared buried under mud and debris that firefighters say is six meters deep in some places. (20 feet). Small bulldozers were used to clear the rubble, and Italian media reported that in some places excavations were still being carried out by hand and that teams of divers had been brought in.

“We continue the search with broken hearts because there are also minors among the missing,” Giacomo Pascal, mayor of the nearby town of Lac Amena, told state broadcaster RAI.

The massive landslide before dawn on Saturday was triggered by extreme rainfall, sending a mass of mud and debris down the mountainside towards the port of Casamicciola, destroying buildings and sweeping vehicles into the sea. As of Sunday, 164 people were left homeless as a result of the events.

One widely circulated video showed a man covered in mud, clinging to a shutter, chest-deep in murky water.

The island received 126 millimeters (almost five inches) of rain in six hours, the heaviest total in 20 years, officials said. Experts said the disaster was exacerbated by construction in high-risk areas on the mountainous island.

“There is a territory that cannot be occupied. You cannot change the use of the area where there is water. The flow of water caused this disaster,” geologist Riccardo Caniparoli told RAI. “There are norms and laws that are not followed.”

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni called a cabinet meeting on Sunday to declare a state of emergency on the island. “The government expresses its closeness to the citizens, mayors and cities of the island of Ischia and thanks the rescuers who are searching for the victims,” ​​Meloni said in a statement.

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