Philippines slide buries 1,500

At least 300 people are dead and 1,500 more are missing after a mudslide crushed a village in the eastern Philippines, according to several relief agency reports.

BY SUSAN KIM | BALTIMORE | February 17, 2006


At least 300 people are dead and 1,500 more are missing after a mudslide crushed a village in the eastern Philippines, according to several relief agency reports.

Hundreds of homes have been buried in the farming village of Guinsaugon on Leyte island, 420 miles southeast of Manila. An elementary school in session with at least 200 students was swallowed by the slide.

Two other villages were at least partially buried under the 30-foot wall of mud.

Search and rescue continued Friday.

Some residents and local officials say that the effects of illegal logging - which stripped the mountainside of protective vegetation - helped trigger the slide. The risk of flash flooding and additional slides was still very high on Friday. The region has seen two weeks of nonstop rains blamed on the La Nina weather pattern.

Action by Churches Together (ACT) stated that it was monitoring reports from relief officials on the scene. ACT was trying to make contact with the National Council of Churches in the Philippines regarding a possible faith-based response effort.


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