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33 dead in Philippines after heavy rains


More than a week of heavy rain has left at least 33 people dead from flashfloods and landslides in the Philippines, the government said Saturday, announcing floodwaters were subsiding in some areas.

Almost 11,000 people remained in government evacuation centres but some had started returning home as rains eased, said Lauren Catedral, a civil defence officer in the southern city of Butuan.

"People are now more confident the water level will not rise. There are some who have returned home but others have remained in their evacuation centres because there are still floods in some areas," she told AFP.

Eight people had been injured in landslides while nine others were missing after the heavy rains, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said.

Heavy rains have lashed parts of the country, particularly the southern island of Mindanao, since late December, causing flashfloods and landslides.

The government weather station said there would still be scattered rain showers in Mindanao this weekend but did not warn of any new flooding.

Cold air from northeast Asia coming into contact with warmer air in the tropical country have helped cause the unusually heavy rains that have battered the country.