World

11 killed in Penang landslide

PENANG Eleven people, mostly foreign workers, have been confirmed dead in a landslide at a construction site in Penang, officials said yesterday.

Huge mounds of earth slid off a hillside on Saturday morning, burying the men as they worked on two residential towers on the Malaysian island, which is popular with tourists.

The cause has yet to be determined.

The authorities had initially said 13 foreign workers and a Malaysian supervisor were trapped under the mud and rubble at the site in Tanjung Bungah, north of Penang's historic capital George Town.

But state-run news agency Bernama later cited fire and rescue department official Ervin Galen Teruki as saying that the total number of workers buried was 11, as three workers had managed to escape.

The three were sent to hospital for treatment.

The bodies of seven men have been found - two Bangladeshis, two Indonesians, two from Myanmar and one yet to be identified, Mr Teruki said.

The landslide has sparked anger in Penang, where concern had been mounting about rapid construction on the island's hills that critics say degrades the environment and increases the risk of such accidents.

- WIRE SERVICES

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