Typhoon Haiyan: Portsmouth Warship To Help Philippines

A Portsmouth-based Royal Navy warship is on it's way to help the people affected by the devastating typhoon in the Philippines.

Destroyer HMS Daring, which has been deployed near Singapore, will head to the disaster zone carrying equipment to make seawater safe to drink.

HMS Daring is the first of the Navy’s six £1bn Type 45 destroyers, weighing 8,000 tonnes and carrying 190 personnel.

The UK is also now donating £10m of humanitarian assistance in aid for the victims, Prime Minister David Cameron said.

Britain will also deploy RAF military transport aircraft in aid of recovery efforts, earmarking at least one C-17 cargo plane to move humanitarian aid and large equipment.

Aid agencies have launched a joint emergency appeal to get food, water and shelter to victims.

The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), made up of 14 aid charities, said its members were already responding to the crisis but the scale of the destruction meant there was "huge unmet need".

A "huge injection" of funds is needed to get aid through to victims after the typhoon made roads impassable and put airports out of action, the DEC said.

About 10,000 people are thought to have been killed and four million affected after the typhoon, said to be the strongest ever to make landfall, hit the south-east Asian nation.

Although weakened, the typhoon has also killed eight people and devastated farmland since making landfall in southern China. 

DEC chief executive Saleh Saeed said: "The destruction in Tacloban city, on the east coast, is said to be reminiscent of the Boxing Day tsunami.

"There is currently no food, water or electricity. We can only imagine how much worse the situation will be for families living in towns and remote villages.

"DEC members are doing all they can to get aid through but they need a huge injection of funds in order to do so. The priorities are getting food, water and shelter to people in desperate need."

The DEC includes the British Red Cross, Christian Aid, Oxfam and Save the Children.

All its members will support the appeal and 13 of the 14 are responding either directly or through partner organisations.

Meanwhile, Australia announced assistance of 10m Australian dollars (£5.8m) and the US government is organising emergency shipments of critically needed material and issuing an immediate $100,000 for relief efforts.

Japan said it will fly a relief team over to the ravaged country and Taiwan is sending $200,000 (£125,000) in aid.

The United Nations World Food Programme has also allocated $2m (£1.25m) and Unicef is sending emergency supplies.

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