Philippines needs $58 million for quake victims: UN

Philippines needs $58 million for quake victims: UN

MANILA - The United Nations appealed for US$46.8 million (S$58 million) in international aid on Friday for the hundreds of thousands now living in tents after a big earthquake in the disaster-prone Philippines.

A 7.1-magnitude quake last week flattened homes, schools, clinics and other vital infrastructure killing more than 200 people.

But a further 35,000 families need emergency shelter while more than 300,000 residents of Bohol island require assistance for basic needs like water, sanitation, food, and health services for six months, UN resident humanitarian coordinator Luizha Carvalho said.

"At this moment, the Philippines is the one (country) that really stands alone with the highest of needs and the highest requirements," Carvalho told a news conference.

She said she hoped donors would still give money despite a series of recent natural and man-made disasters that also required international assistance, such as a destructive typhoon in December last year and guerrilla attacks that destroyed parts of the southern city of Zamboanga last month.

"We have a very interesting pattern of several events that are happening almost simultaneously and we still hope for the generosity of the donors," Carvalho said.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the Philippines asked donor governments and aid groups to give more on top of those already providing for survivors of Typhoon Bopha and the Zamboanga conflict.

The October 15 quake left 201 dead, along with 54,000 houses destroyed on Bohol and nearby central islands.

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