UN chief visits storm ravaged PhilippineAssociated Press . Tacloban, Philippines
The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, was welcomed on Saturday with Christmas songs sung by children who lost their homes as he toured a central Philippine city devastated by a super typhoon that killed more than 6,100 people last month.
Ban flew to Tacloban on central Leyte island after meeting the president, Benigno Aquino III, and other officials in Manila to discuss recovery efforts.
Typhoon Haiyan slammed ashore November 8 as one of the strongest storms on record with fierce winds and tsunami-like storm surges that flattened entire towns. More than 1,700 people are still listed as missing and more than 4 million others have lost their homes.
Ban, wearing a dark blue cap, a khaki shirt and rubber shoes, visited a school where dozens of children waiting for him sang ‘Jingle Bells’ inside a white UN-donated tent, where he joined them in clapping and swaying to the music.
‘Please hold on. Don’t despair. We have come to help you,’ he told the children.
More than 200 heavily-armed police provided security from the airport to the school. Ban’s flight was delayed because of poor visibility and overcast skies.
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