A day after a powerful typhoon killed nearly 300 people in the southern Philippines, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies issued an urgent appeal for money to aid survivors.
Typhoon Bopha is one of the strongest typhoons to hit the Philippines this year. While some 20 major storms normally lash the Philippines annually, the southern provinces being battered by Bopha are unaccustomed to fierce typhoons.
A peace agreement, to be signed later this month, will give the Muslim minority in the Philippines an autonomous region in the south. The agreement is significant after 40 years of conflict, and 15 years of periodic negotiations with Muslim rebels.