- Associated Press - Sunday, January 7, 2018

BERLIN (AP) - Flooding on the Rhine river in Germany has prompted authorities to halt shipping around Cologne, but officials hope that water levels will peak early in the week.

Persistent rainfall and melting snow have led to a gradual rise in river levels in western Germany over recent days. Authorities had already restricted shipping on upper reaches of the Rhine and on two of its major tributaries, the Moselle and Neckar rivers.

On Sunday, Cologne authorities said traffic for vessels including tourist boats has now been stopped in the city, where the river is relatively narrow. A riverside promenade was flooded, but officials said the fairly low-lying historic center isn’t threatened.

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