Asia-Pacific

Tropical storm Conson hits northern Vietnam

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A tropical storm has made landfall in northern Vietnam, bringing heavy rains and high winds.

Seven people are reported missing after Typhoon Conson - now downgraded to a tropical storm - hit coastal areas.

On Friday, Conson battered China's southern island of Hainan, where two people died.

The storm added to the worst floods in China for years, which have killed more than 135 people in July.

Conson arrived in China after hitting the Philippines, where at least 38 people were killed and a number were still missing.

Landslide warning

Conson hit Vietnam's province of Thanh Hoa on Saturday, brining sustained winds of 83km (53 miles) per hour.

Six fishermen were missing near the Paracels archipelago in the South China Sea after their boat sank while seeking shelter, state-run Vietnam Television said.

Reports in Vietnam media also said a female tourist was swept away by waves in Thanh Hoa.

Some 200,000 people in the area had left their homes before the storm arrived, officials said.

The government in Hanoi also warned that there was a risk of flash floods and landslides in mountainous areas of the country.

Conson is expected to further weaken into a low pressure system as it moves further north-west.

On Friday, a security guard and a motorcyclist died after being hit by falling giant billboards in two separate incidents on Hainan, China's state-run Xinhua news agency said.

The storm also brought heavy rains to the tourist resort of Sanya, uprooting trees and cutting power supply, Xinhua said.

Flights, shipping and ferries were suspended as the storm approached the island, which is popular with tourists. About 24,000 fishing boats were recalled to their ports.

Torrential rains across a huge area of southern China have already killed about 400 people this year.

More than 35 million people across China have been hit by the poor weather and 1.2 million have been relocated.

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