An aerial view shows a flooded residential area after a river was flooded by heavy rains in Kyoto in this photo taken by Kyodo. -Reuters Photo

TOKYO: Officials say at least 25 people have died and thousands of others remain cut off by floods and mudslides triggered by torrential rains in southern Japan.    

Evacuation orders issued a day earlier for a quarter of a million people were lifted in most areas Sunday as the rains subsided, allowing many people to return home.

But thousands remained cut off by landslides or fallen trees that blocked roads in mountainous areas. Local officials said 21 people died in hardest-hit Kumamoto prefecture. Four others died in nearby Oita and Fukuoka on the southern island of Kyushu.

Seven others remained missing. Most victims were in their 70s and 80s. Houses in Kyoto, Japan's old capital, also were flooded. The Meteorological Agency said the worst was over but predicted more rain through Monday.

Updated Jul 15, 2012 03:53pm

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