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Birth amid typhoon debris cheered in Philippines

Posted: November 11, 2013 6:40 p.m.
Updated: November 11, 2013 6:40 p.m.

New-born baby Bea Joy is held as mother Emily Ortega, 21, rests after giving birth at an improvised clinic at Tacloban airport Monday in Tacloban city, Leyte province in central Philippines.

 

TACLOBAN, Philippines (AP) — Cheers broke out Monday in the typhoon-devastated airport of the city of Tacloban in the Philippines when 21-year old Emily Ortega gave birth to a baby girl.

It was a rare piece of good news for the seaside city where officials fear at least 10,000 were killed, and where tens of thousands of residents saw their homes flattened by ferocious winds and a massive storm surge from Typhoon Haiyan.

Bea Joy Sagales appeared in good health. Her birth drew applause from others in the airport and military medics who assisted in her delivery.

Her birth was near miraculous — her mother was in an evacuation center when the storm surge hit and flooded the city. The mother had to swim and cling to a post to survive before she found safety at the airport. Her husband in Manila was unaware of what has happened.

The typhoon made landfall Friday, barreling through six central Philippine islands, wiping away buildings and leveling seaside homes with winds of 235 kilometers per hour (147 miles per hour) and gusts of 275 kph (170 mph).

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