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Death Toll from China's Typhoon Saomai Rises to 441


Chinese state media say the death toll from Typhoon Saomai has climbed to 441, after rescuers discovered five more bodies in a fishing village.

The Xinhua News Agency reported Sunday the bodies were found in Fuding city in the southeastern province of Fujian, where nearly one thousand ships sank during the typhoon. Saomai made landfall August 10th.

Residents of typhoon-battered areas have accused the government of covering up the true number of victims from the strongest storm to hit China in more than 50 years. Government officials deny the charges.

Eight storms have battered mainland China this year, causing nearly one and a half billion dollars in economic losses.

Xinhua says the storms have affected more than 40 million people in six provinces and flooded more than one and a half million hectares of farmland.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters