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Strong wind, downpours leave 1,200 homeless in Chile
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Strong wind and rains in the past days in central-south Chile have made 1,200 homeless and isolated another 1,400, regional authorities said on Thursday.

Director of the National Bureau of Emergency (ONEMI) Carmen Fernandez has called for swift government actions to open shelters for the displaced.

Roads were cut off, rivers overflowed and landslides were frequent in the wake of the prolonging rainy season, said the official.

In Los Lagos, the most affected region, a total of 1,023 were rendered homeless, Fernandez said.

Fernandez affirmed that the frontal system is decreasing, therefore "we can work much better, because it is difficult to have a real measure of the damages when the rainy season is in full development."

According to the latest forecast reports, the bad weather will begin to retreat on Thursday.

(Xinhua News Agency July 18, 2008)

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