Floods hit Solomon Islands

New Zealand has given an initial contribution of $300,000 to help the Solomon Islands cope with flash floods that have killed at least three people and left thousands homeless.

Foreign Minister Murray McCully said it was likely the death toll from the floods would rise, and there had also been damage to infrastructure and homes.

$250,000 would go to agencies working in the Solomon Islands to provide emergency relief supplies and shelter to those affected by the flooding.

A further $50,000 in emergency funding has been released to New Zealand's High Commission to help address areas of immediate need identified by the Solomon Islands' Government.

Mr McCully said New Zealand was in contact with the Solomon Islands about what was required and was ready to send further help.

In the Solomons capital city, Honiara, the Matanikau River burst its banks, inundating the downtown area.

One eye witness told the Solomon Star it happened very fast.

"I don't know, people thought the River would just rise and probably rescinded. But it kept coming and rising, leaving no time for some families to escape.

"It was sad, but I witnessed a mother and two children swept away in their home. The current was too strong."

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