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Cyclone Mocha expected to make landfall Sunday

FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM

The Department of Meteorology and Hydrology announced on May 11 that a tropical depression in the southeastern Bay of Bengal has moved northwest and intensified into Cyclone Mocha. It is projected to move towards the Bangladesh-Burma coastline. Mocha turned into a cyclone today and is likely to slowly move northeast tomorrow (May 12). It is predicted to make landfall between Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh and Kyaukphyu in Rakhine State on May 14.

The storm is currently located approximately 365 nautical miles southwest of the Coco Islands, 475 nautical miles southwest of Haigyi Island, and 615 nautical miles southwest of Sittwe, the Rakhine State capital in Burma. It’s around 665 nautical miles southwest of Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. The highest wind speeds of Mocha are currently 45 mph and are predicted to bring rain and thunderstorms to Ayeyarwaddy, Yangon, Bago, Naypyidaw, and Tanintharyi regions as well as Rakhine, Chin, Kachin, Shan, Karenni, Karen and Mon states between May 11-15. Wind speeds near the center of the storm may reach highs of 96-110 mph.

The National Unity Government (NUG) released a statement on May 10 indicating that there are three danger zones. The most dangerous zone is Maungdaw and Sittwe districts. The second most dangerous zone is Kyaukphyu District and the third most dangerous zone is Thandwe District and Ayeyarwaddy’s Pathein District. Locals in these zones may encounter strong winds, rain, landslides and flooding. The NUG urged locals to exercise extreme caution. The Humanitarian and Development Coordination office of the United League of Arakan/Arakan Army (ULA/AA) predicts that the center of the storm will be very close to Maungdaw and Buthidaung townships with wind speeds of more than 100 mph on May 14. Regime spokesperson Zaw Min Tun said on May 8 that the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology will release weather updates regarding the storm in a “timely manner in order to not to cause public panic.”

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