Hail and rains kill 19 in China

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iol pic wld china rain REUTERS File photo - A rescuer transfer an elderly woman and her granddaughter with a forklift on a flooded street in Xianning, Hubei province in 2011.

China says hail and torrential rains pouring down in north-west China have killed 19 people and left 45 others missing.

The official Xinhua News Agency said on Friday the stormy weather disrupted power and communications, destroyed farmland and a highway in Minxian county of Gansu province.

Xinhua says nearly 2 000 people were evacuated after the storm battered the county on Thursday evening.

The agency says the provincial government has sent a team to oversee rescue efforts. - Sapa-AP

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