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Landslides, floods kill 29 in Vietnam

HANOI -- Landslides and floods in Vietnam have killed at least 29 people in recent days as heavy rain soaks northern and central areas, state media and the government said on Saturday.

More rain was forecast to strike the flood-hit Nghe An province and authorities were getting people out of dangerous areas, the government said.

In one incident, 16 people were killed in landslides while they were going to tin mine on Friday in the mountainous northern province of Yen Bai. Another person died in hospital, the Defense Ministry-run People's Army newspaper said.

The affected provinces are far from the Central Highlands coffee belt. Rice production in the Mekong Delta is also not affected. Vietnam is the world's second largest coffee producer and comes second after Thailand in rice exports.

Vietnam, parts of which are densely populated and low-lying, is regularly battered by heavy weather and floods during the rainy season.

An average of 430 people were killed each year by natural disasters between 2007-2011 in Vietnam, with property losses estimated at 1 percent of gross domestic product, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung told a conference on food security and climate change in Hanoi on Thursday.

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