In a condolence message to Queensland premier Anna Bligh, the Tibetan leader and Nobel laureate said: 'I was saddened by the unprecedented flood in your state which has brought severe destruction and suffering to the property and general public.
'But I admire the Australian government's preparedness in tackling the flood disaster in terms of its relief efforts.' His Holiness the Dalai lama, added: 'I am praying for no further loss of lives of those affected by the flood, speedy reconstruction of destroyed homes and an early end to the disaster.'
5 children were among the 10 killed late Monday as the deluge tore through Toowoomba and other parts of the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane, upending cars and ripping buildings from their foundations. The officials urged thousands of people to flee to higher ground on Tuesday in Australia's third-largest city, Brisbane.
Around 300 people were plucked from the disaster zone by helicopter on Tuesday after the tiny hamlet of Forest Hill was cut off by the torrent, Queensland premier Anna Bligh told reporters. Some 78 people were still missing late Tuesday, and Queensland police warned that the death toll was likely to rise as emergency crews continued to sift through the wreckage.