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Death toll from Haiyan in Philippines rises to 2,275

Updated: 2013-11-13 19:39
( Xinhua)

MANILA - The death toll from Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines has risen to 2,275 Wednesday, said Eduardo del Rosario, the executive director of National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

Del Rosario told a press briefing there are 3,665 injured and 80 are still missing.

Philippine President Benigno Aquino III said Tuesday that the projected number of the dead from the typhoon is 2,000 to 2,500, lowering an earlier estimate by a local police official that the death toll may top 10,000 in Tacloban City alone.

Asked if the number of casualties would surpass the President's estimate, Del Rosario said: "We do not like to speculate. It's better if it will not increase...Let us not speculate."

Del Rosario explained that the high number of casualties was due to storm surge caused by Haiyan. "As they said, it's like a mini tsunami-like storm surge," he said.

"You may be wondering why many died, it reached thousands. We saw the destruction that happened on the ground," said del Rosario, adding the Tacloban City airport was submerged by two to four meters of water.

Del Rosario also disputed speculations that the government did not prepare for the typhoon, saying local government units effected preemptive evacuations before Haiyan made a landfall last Friday.