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Mass burial in Tacloban

Text and photos by LUIS LIWANAG

TACLOBAN CITY—The city government of Tacloban finally buried the dead in a shallow ditch that officials said was just a temporary resting place for those who perished from the wrath of Typhoon Yolanda.

Cadavers wrapped in body bags, blankets, mats and even GI sheets collected from all over the city were laid to rest near a cemetery here by residents, in the absence of any agency that could have taken the lead in the mass burial.

The burial takes place six days after Yolanda battered Central Visayas, leaving more than 2,000 dead. Mayor Edward Codilla said the city had to wait for more bodies to be brought here before the burial could take place. “So we cannot cover it with just three bodies we have to wait until it’s filled up,” he said.

The stench from the decomposing bodies had been filling the air here, but Codilla insisted the smell does not cause any harm. The city decided on the burial even though most of the bodies remained unidentified.

Yolanda mass burial