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Taiwan asks for global help in wake of typhoon

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Wally Santana/AP

(Read caption) Taiwanese soldiers rescue a villager on an emergency cable sling strung across the Ba Si Lan river in Sinfa, Taiwan, on Thursday, five days after flash flooding from Typhoon Morakot took the lives of 32 fellow villagers.

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BEIJINGTaiwan has appealed for international help to rescue thousands of people stranded in mountain areas in the wake deadly Typhoon Morakot.

Troops are airlifting survivors and cutting roads through deluged areas amid mounting public alarm over the fate of the missing. So far, 108 people have been confirmed to have died in the country’s worst flooding in five decades, and several hundred more remain unaccounted for.

Another 4,000 troops have been deployed, bolstering a 16,000-strong contingency. Some villagers reportedly used their bare hands to try to dig out survivors from homes buried by landslides.

President Ma Ying-jeou said the US, Japan, China, and Singapore had offered financial help. The government has appealed for overseas equipment to aid the rescue effort, including helicopters and gravel trucks.

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