Typhoon Wreaks Havoc on Mindanao

The death toll from “Pablo” (international name, “Bopha”), a powerful storm battering the southern Philippines has risen to about 200, as rescue teams arrive in affected areas, reports the BBC. At least 156 people are known to have died in Compostela Valley province alone when Typhoon Bopha struck eastern Mindanao, according to local officials. Rescuers have reached most areas, but have had difficulty getting to some isolated communities. Many were evacuated ahead of the storm, now over the western island of Palawan. The cost of damage to agriculture and infrastructure in Compostela Valley province could reach at least four billion pesos ($98m), with the typhoon destroying 70-80 percent of plantations, mostly bananas for export.