More than 200 dead in Philippine typhoon

Associated Press
Relatives grieve as they view bodies recovered from floods in New Bataan, Compostela Valley province, southern Philippines Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012. The death toll from Typhoon Bhopa climbed to more than 100 people Wednesday, while scores of others remain missing in the worst-hit areas of the southern Philippines. (AP Photo/Karlos Manlupig)
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NEW BATAAN, Philippines (AP) — The death toll from a powerful typhoon in the southern Philippines climbed to more than 200 people Wednesday and officials feared many more bodies could be found as rescuers reach hard-hit areas that had been isolated by landslides, floods and downed communications.

At least 151 people have died in the worst-hit province of Compostela Valley since Typhoon Bopha began lashing the region early Tuesday, including 66 villagers and soldiers who perished in a flash flood that swamped two emergency shelters and a military camp in New Bataan town, provincial spokeswoman Fe Maestre told The Associated Press.

About 80 people survived the deluge in New Bataan with injuries, but an unspecified number of villagers remain missing. On Wednesday, the farming town of 45,000 people was a muddy wasteland of collapsed houses and columns of coconut and banana trees felled by Bopha's ferocious winds.

Army Maj. Gen. Ariel Bernardo said 51 people died and 98 others are missing in nearby Davao Oriental province.

Disaster-response agencies reported seven other typhoon-related deaths elsewhere.

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