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UN Appeals for $144 Million to Help Storm-Ravaged Philippines

The United Nations is appealing for $144 million to help victims of three back-to-back storms in the Philippines.

This updated appeal nearly doubles the $74 million originally requested in October.

According to a statement by the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, just $26 million has been raised so far, limiting the ability of aid agencies to effectively help those in need.

Tropical storm Ketsana swept across the Philippines on September 26 and was followed by Typhoon Parma a week later. On October 31, a third storm, Typhoon Mirinae, dumped even more rain onto the island nation.

The storms caused floods and mudslides that killed more than 900 people, and affected nearly nine million others.

The U.N. says 1.7 million people are still displaced or living in areas that remain flooded, putting them at risk for disease outbreaks. It also says the storms severely disrupted the critical planting season, leading to further long-term implications of food security.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.