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The scenes in Tacloban are of absolute devastation. The vast majority of the thousands killed by Typhoon Haiyan died in the coastal city on the Philippine island of Leyte.

Barely a building remains standing in some areas. Local people describe a giant wave hitting the city of 200,000 people, destroying everything in its path.

Many are looking for missing relatives and friends, while scavenging for food and water as they struggle to survive.

Numbed by the tragedy, one woman says she just needs a shirt to wear – adding that she thanks God, believing the typhoon will change people for the better.

In the meantime a state of calamity has been declared, hundreds of soldiers and police deployed, and a curfew imposed amid reports of looting.

Among the debris, women have been giving birth while the stench of dead bodies fills the air.

A college student said he hoped the Philippine flag he found in the rubble will be used as a symbol of the country’s revival.

For now people have walked miles to converge on the airport, hoping to benefit from the first emergency supplies as they begin slowly to arrive.

Copyright © 2014 euronews

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