18 die in floods, mudslides in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka's government says five more people have died in widespread floods and mudslides, pushing the death toll to 18 from days of heavy rains.

The Disaster Management Center says nearly 200,000 people, mostly in Eastern Province, have lost their homes because of the flooding. Most are now living in camps.

It says most of dead either drowned or were buried in mudslides.

Schools in several affected provinces remain closed.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa was forced to abandon a trip Wednesday to survey the flood damage because of the bad weather.