Philippines quake toll now 144

Philippines quake toll now 144

The death toll in the powerful earthquake in central Philippines has reached 144, a government agency said Wednesday afternoon.

Of the dead, 134 were from Bohol, nine from Cebu and one from Siquijor, Xinhua quoted Rey Balido, operational officer and spokesman of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, as saying.

Another 291 people were injured and 23 others were still missing. Over three million people were affected in the provinces of Bohol, Cebu and Siquijor.

By Wednesday, 67 percent power was restored in Bohol, Balido said.

The quake occurred at 8.12 a.m. Tuesday with the epicentre at a depth of 33 kilometers.

Philippines President Benigno Aquino III flew to Cebu province early Wednesday afternoon to assess the damage caused by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake.

He made an aerial inspection of the affected areas and distributed relief material to the victims.

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