(Click for larger
Tropical Storm Jeanne
claimed at least 556 lives in Haiti over the weekend.(Xinhua/Reuters
HAVANA, Sept. 20 (Xinhuanet) -- Tropical Storm Jeanne
claimed at least 556 lives in Haiti after it rampaged across parts of the
country over the weekend, the United Nations Stabilization Missionin Haiti
announced on Monday.
More than 500 people were killed in northern city
Gonaives in storm-triggered floods, said Toussaint Kongo-Doudou, a spokesman for
the UN mission, adding the figure is expected to rise as the water goes down.
In the northwestern town of Port de Paix, another 56
people were killed, he said.
The Haitian authorities have declared the entire
flood zone a disaster area, after Jeanne devastated the island of Hispaniola
onFriday and Saturday, leaving 80 percent of Gonaives under water.
On Saturday, floods tore through Gonaives and
surrounding areas,forcing hundreds of people to flee their homes. Some families
spent nights on their flat roofs, while others slept on car hoods.
Jeanne also killed 18 in the Dominican Republic and
seven in Puerto Rico.
According to the latest statistics, Jeanne regained
hurricane strength over the open Atlantic east of the Bahamas, posing no
apparent threat to land and heading away from the mainland United States.