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Mudslide smashes home, killing 5 siblings in southern Mexico

October 25, 2017

LARRAINZAR, Mexico (AP) — A mudslide buried a home in Mexico’s southern state of Chiapas early Wednesday, killing five children from the same family, authorities said.

Two girls and three boys between the ages of 3 and 11 died in the community of Tzajalho, which is in the Larrainzar municipality about 16 miles (26 kilometers) north of San Cristobal de la Casas, said Victor Amezcua, spokesman for the state Civil Defense.

He said the five children were sleeping in one room of the wooden home. Their parents, who were rescued, were sleeping in another. Authorities said the children died from asphyxiation.

“We were about to get up when the mountain came down,” said the children’s father, Gregorio Santiz Gomez. “The children were in the other room and that’s where they stayed.”

He spoke at a nearby hospital while nurses attended to his pregnant wife. They grow corn and harvest coffee in the mountainous region.

Chiapas Civil Defense said in a statement that the slide occurred around 5:20 a.m. It blamed heavy rain and saturated soil.

In the neighboring community of Majoval, two other homes were damaged, but their inhabitants were able to escape.

Larrainzar is a historic town where the rebel leader then known as Subcomandante Marcos held peace talks with Mexico’s government during the early years of the Zapatista insurgency.

Update hourly