Nine people were missing and 15 others showed no vital signs due to massive flooding triggered by torrential rain in the southwestern Japanese prefectures of Kumamoto and Kagoshima, local media reported.

Of the 15 without vital signs, 14 were found at a nursery home in Kuma in Kumamoto Prefecture.

About 203,200 residents in the two prefectures were asked to take shelter.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, Amakusa in Kumamoto Prefecture received record precipitation of 98 millimeters per hour.

As the Kuma River in Kumamoto overflowed, causing extensive flooding, the prefectural government asked for the dispatch of Ground Self-Defense Force personnel for disaster relief work.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in an emergency meeting of cabinet ministers that about 10,000 Self-Defense Forces troops would be mobilized for relief operation, while relief supplies would be shipped to affected residents. Enditem

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