180 dead, 375 missing in floods, landslides in Philippines

Breaking News December 17, 2011 00:00

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Manila - At least 180 people were killed and 375 were missing in floods and landslides triggered by a tropical storm in the southern Philippines, military and disaster relief officials said Saturday.

Tropical Storm Washi slammed into the southern region of Mindanao on Friday, bringing heavy rains that caused many rivers to overflow. The floods were worsened by the high tide, local officials said.

Colonel Leopoldo Galon, a regional military spokesman, said armed forces rescuers have retrieved 97 bodies in the city of Cagayan de Oro, while 125 remained missing.

In Iligan City, soldiers have recovered 75 bodies, according to Lieutenant Colonel Randolph Cabangbang. He added that up to 250 people were still missing in the devastated municipality.

Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman said local officials feared the death toll could still rise because many dead in the two coastal cities were swept into sea.

"Those on the riverbanks were actually washed out to sea and rescuers are still in the process of getting casualties out of the sea," she said.//DPA


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