MOGADISHU, May 19 (Xinhua) -- A powerful tropical cyclone which formed in the Gulf of Aden has caused heavy rains in northern Somalia in the past two days, destroying houses and leaving about 2,000 livestock dead, the UN said on Saturday.
In its Flash Update on the Tropical Cyclone Sagar, the UN office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) warned that the heavy rains were expected along the coastline of Somaliland on Saturday afternoon.
"Authorities and humanitarians are closely monitoring the situation as it unfolds in Puntland and Somaliland," said the UN humanitarian agency.
It said in Puntland, heavy rainfall was observed in the northern area of Bari, with Bareeda, Caluula, Murcanyo, Gumbax, and some parts of Xaabo being among the worst affected areas.
"Around 35 houses and 15 small boats were destroyed, while 56 camels, nearly 1,260 goats and sheep and 19 donkeys died. In the ancient coastal town of Lasqoray, houses in Habarshiro and Ceel Buh were also affected by flash flooding," said the UN.
It noted that huge ocean waves were experienced in coastal areas on Thursday and Friday, with most of the affected people displaced or moved to higher ground.
Sagar was named by UK Meteorological Office on Wednesday, after beginning life as a tropical depression (1A) in the Gulf of Aden.
The UN office adds the forecast appears to be as severe as the 2013 Somali Cyclone, but slightly below the severity of the 2008 Yemen Cyclone. However, much will depend upon the track of the cyclone over the coming days.
The UN has warned that severe flash flooding and river flooding across the region will lead to a loss of human life, livestock, and the destruction of crops, property and infrastructure.