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8/25/2009

Taiwan confirms 292 deaths, 385 missing from typhoon

TAIPEI (AFP) – Taiwan's government on Monday confirmed that 292 people were killed and 385 missing after Typhoon Morakot struck the island and caused its worst flooding in half a century.

Those still unaccounted for include 311 from the southern village of Hsiaolin, the National Fire Agency said.

At least 45 people were injured as the typhoon lashed the island with a record three metres (118 inches) of rain, submerging houses and streets and destroying bridges.

President Ma Ying-jeou, whose popularity has sunk to an all-time low since the typhoon over his administration's slow response to the disaster, has said the death toll could exceed 500, with hundreds buried.
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