China flood death toll rises to 128; 24 missing

Severe flooding in China has left at least 128 people dead and 24 missing, with direct economic losses passing the US$1 billion (€750 million) mark, state media reported Sunday. Xinhua News Agency said the hardest-hit areas have been in southern China, including Guangdong province, the export powerhouse next to Hong Kong. Most of the economic losses of US$1.17 billion (€880,000) were in agriculture, Xinhua said. China is frequently hit by natural disasters. The agency said that while there is flooding in the south, the northern part of the country is experiencing a drought.