THE PHILIPPINES

Manila under water

The streets of Manila were left underwater after the Philippines were hit by typhoon Ketsana on Saturday, bringing the country its heaviest rainfall in 40 years. See the photos...

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The streets of Manila were left underwater after the Philippines were hit by typhoon Ketsana on Saturday, bringing the country its heaviest rainfall in 40 years. Martin Poletiek sent us these striking photos of the disaster.

The initial death toll for the floods stands at 140. More than 451 000 were displaced and 32 were reported missing, according to the National Disaster Coordinating Council. Filipino authorities have appealed for international humanitarian assistance and publicly apologised for the slowness of rescue efforts. Although the Philippines see dozens of typhoons every year, local government units appeared overwhelmed by what President Gloria Arroyo described as a "once in a lifetime" storm.