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Philippines: No airport hassle for Taylor Kitsch (omg!) - March 3, 2012 by dharkanjhel

In this Thursday, March 1, 2012 file photo, Taylor Kitsch arrives for the UK premiere of John Carter at a central London venue. A Philippine official said Kitsch was not hassled at Manila's airport recently, as the Canadian actor indicated this week. (AP Photo/Jonathan Short, File)

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A Philippine official says “Friday Night Lights” star Taylor Kitsch was not hassled at Manila’s airport recently, as the Canadian actor indicated this week.

Kitsch said Wednesday on the “Late Show with David Letterman” that customs officers stopped him at the airport and ordered him back to Japan because his passport didn’t have enough pages to stamp his arrival. He was to finish filming Oliver Stone’s “Savages” in the Philippines.

Kitsch said he was let in only after proving with his iPhone that he was an actor.

Philippine Customs chief Ruffy Biazon wrote in his blog Friday that no

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Philippines swamped by typhoon floods - October 12, 2011 by dharkanjhel

Manila –

Emergency services and residents in the Philippine capital cleaned up and restored electricity today after a powerful typhoon unleashed floodwaters that killed at least 20 people and sent huge waves crashing over seawalls.
Most deaths occurred in and around metropolitan Manila, which already was soaked by heavy monsoon rains ahead of the arrival of Typhoon Nesat, which brought more downpours and wind gusts of up to 93 miles per hour.
The typhoon blew out of the Philippines today, packing winds of 75 mph and was expected to make landfall on China’s Hainan Island on Thursday evening or early Friday.
The Philippine disaster agency said 35 people were unaccounted for and that 108 had been rescued.
Power supply was gradually restored to the downtown area, which was strewn with trash and fallen bamboo pieces washed ashore by storm surges. The Metro Rail Transit also resumed operations.
Some areas were still flooded, including Manila Ocean Park facing Manila Bay and a major thoroughfare, Taft Avenue. The nearby U.S. Embassy, which was inundated Tuesday, remained closed.
Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim said huge waves as high as coconut trees breached a 65-foot-long seawall astride a popular promenade, allowing seawater from Manila Bay to rapidly engulf hotels, a hospital, business offices and several blocks of residential areas in waist-deep floodwaters.
“This is the first time that this kind of flooding happened here,” said Lim, who began his career in Manila as a tough-talking police officer decades ago.
Strong winds toppled about 40 huge trees around the capital’s tourist district and 3,500 people were moved from shantytowns into three school buildings, where they spent the night huddled amid continuing rains.
Emergency repair crews were clearing roads of trees, debris and stalled cars as schools and offices reopened today.
The flooding came a day after this sprawling, coastal city of 12 million held two-year commemorations for the nearly 500 people killed during a 2009 cyclone, which dumped a month’s rainfall in just 12 hours. The geography of the archipelago makes it the site of about 20 storms and typhoons from the Pacific each year.
Some residents acted more quickly this time to evacuate homes as waters rose, including in the Manila suburb of Marikina, where 2,000 people escaped the swelling river by flocking to an elementary school, carrying pets, TV sets, bags of clothes and bottled water.
“We can replace things, but not people’s lives,” said janitor Banny Domanais, arriving at the school with his wife and three young daughters.
Typhoon Nesat hit before dawn Tuesday in eastern provinces and headed inland just north of Manila with up to an inch of rain per hour, half that of the storm two years ago, said government forecaster Samuel Duran.
Emergency workers evacuated river areas in Manila that are notorious for flooding. In all, authorities ordered more than 100,000 people across the country to shelter from the storm’s sustained winds and rains dropping from an immense 400-mile cloud band.

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Philippines Recover after Nesat, Brace for Nalgae - October 9, 2011 by dharkanjhel

Updated: September 28, 2011 11:00 am ET

MANILA, Philippines (AP) – Forecasters sounded alarms over a new storm headed for the Philippines Wednesday, even as workers repaired seawalls demolished by a typhoon that killed at least 21 people and left scores stranded in swamped communities.

Typhoon Nesat also left 35 people missing and brought some of downtown Manila’s worst flooding in decades before blowing out of the northern Philippines early Wednesday toward southern China with winds of 75 mph (120 kph).

Floodwaters were receding in most places, but many low-lying communities in the north remained in crisis.

Mayor Santiago Austria of the rice-farming town of Jaen in Nueva Ecija province appealed to the government for help, saying many people in his community of 63,000 needed to be rescued but that officials there had only four rescue boats.

“Many people here are still on top of their houses. We don’t have enough boats to reach them and hand them food,” Austria said.

Nesat Photos and Related Imagery

Nalgae is Next in Line

On the heels of Nesat, Typhoon Nalgae aims for the northern Philippines.

Civil Defense Office chief Benito Ramos said army troops were on their way to assist Jaen.

The town of Obando, north of Manila, remained under waist-high water and officials had not yet been able to check on reports of houses swept away on two nearby islands where thousands of residents live, Mayor Orencio Gabriel said.

In all, 320,000 people were affected by the storm, with 73,000 in evacuation centers and about 100 still stranded, officials said.

Meanwhile, a fresh tropical storm was brewing in the Pacific, government forecaster Bobby Javier said, adding that it already had sustained winds of 52 mph (85 kph) and gusts up to 62 mph (100 kph) and was expected to strengthen significantly before hitting major parts of the country in the next few days.

Ramos said disaster agencies were being kept on full alert because of the new storm.

In Manila, hundreds of workers used cranes to lay sandbags where parts of a downtown seawall were ripped off by the typhoon’s huge waves and fierce winds. Residents made repairs to nearly 5,000 houses damaged in the storm.

Scavengers rummaged through household items carried by the floodwaters — footwear, a basketball, a child’s school bag, a hunter’s hat. Mar Depas, 28, said he collected about a dozen fairly new leather shoes and sandals but was disappointed that they didn’t match.

“I can’t find their pairs. They’re useless,” Depas said. “I came late … most of the better recyclable stuff is gone.”

Typhoon Nesat had unleashed torrents of floodwaters Tuesday that swamped Manila’s downtown areas, rapidly engulfing hotels, a hospital, the U.S. Embassy, business offices and several blocks of residential areas in waist-deep floodwaters.

Power was gradually restored Wednesday to Manila’s downtown area, which strewn with trash and fallen bamboo pieces washed ashore by storm surges. City trains resumed operations.

Associated Press writer Oliver Teves contributed to this report.

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