Exceptional heavy rains in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium have wreaked havoc. In Germany alone, dozens of people have died in the floods.
Rhine River floods of tributaries have wreaked havoc in western Germany. Dozens of people have died, according to news agency Reuters, and dozens of people are missing.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday he was shocked by the devastation caused by the floods.
“My condolences to the families of the dead and missing. My heartfelt thanks to many tireless helpers and rescue services,” he said in a statement has tweeted spokesman Steffen Seibert.
Heavy rains have also caused devastation and deaths in Belgium and the Netherlands. In Belgium, at least four people have died, the AFP news agency said.
European President of the Commission Ursula von der Leyen said on Twitter that the countries affected could use the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.
The Union Civil Protection Mechanism coordinates EU-level response to natural and man-made disasters.
Storm the Prime Minister of the badly ravaged German state of Rhineland-Palatinate Malu Dreyer said the situation was a disaster.
“There are dead and missing, and many people are still in danger. Our rescue service is working around the clock, and workers are risking their lives,” he told Reuters.
North Rhine-Westphalia Prime Minister of the State Armin Laschet visited Hagen on Thursday.
“We will experience similar cases over and over again. This means we need to step up our efforts to protect the climate at European, global and federal levels, because climate change is not limited to one region, ”he said.
From Laschet the next Chancellor will be inaugurated when Angela Merkel resigns later this year. Germany will hold federal elections in September to decide who will become the new chancellor.
The Greens, who are in second place in opinion polls before the federal election, blamed the floods for global warming.
“This is already the impact of a climate disaster, and this should once again wake us to realize that the disaster is already here,” the Green Parliamentary leader Katrin Goering-Eckardt told a television channel, according to Reuters.