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13 dead or missing in Philippines landslide: officials

This aerial view shows the area destroyed from a landslide in the southern Philippine mining town of Mako, in Compostella Valley on September 7, 2008. Two landslides triggered by heavy monsoon rains hit the area at the weekend, killing nine and injuring 19 others, with another 16 still missing and feared dead. Photo courtesy AFP.
by Staff Writers
Maco, Philippines (AFP) Sept 6, 2008
Six people were killed and at least seven others were missing after a landslide triggered by heavy rains buried houses in the southern Philippines, officials said Saturday.

More than 100 residents whose homes were destroyed took refuge in a chapel, while one survivor said there could be many more missing in the town of Maco, in the Compostela Valley.

District chairman Jovencio Anquera said the landslip came after three days of continuous rain, burying at least 13 houses and also knocking out power supplies.

Survivor Renato Corrales said he saw many people shouting for help as he fled the town, indicating a large number were missing.

Police, soldiers and workers of a nearby mining company have arrived at the scene to dig for survivors.

Last year, 10 people died in a landslide in the same area, also caused by heavy rain.

Widespread poverty in the Philippines often forces many people to live in poorly maintained areas vulnerable to landslides and mudslides created by the frequent rains.

In the most recent incident before Saturday, four people were killed in a landslide in the central island of Cebu in June.

In February 2006, a landslide buried the entire village of Guinsaugon in the central island of Leyte, with more than a thousand believed dead.

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