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Typhoon babies fight against odds

A mother breastfeeds her baby inside a chapel which was turned into a makeshift hospital after Super Typhoon Haiyan battered Tacloban city in central Philippines November 13, 2013. Desperation gripped Philippine islands devastated by Typhoon Haiyan as looting turned deadly on Wednesday and survivors panicked over delays in supplies of food, water and medicine, some digging up underground water pipes and smashing them open. REUTERS/John Javellana

Typhoon babies fight against odds

In the chapel of the only functioning public hospital in typhoon-ravaged Tacloban, seven tiny, premature babies lie sweltering in intense heat, looked over by anxious mothers and a wooden statue of Christ.

An eighth, born two days after Friday's monster storm hit the central Philippines, is kept alive only by his exhausted grandmother who pumps air by hand into his sick lungs. Only one baby, his face bruised purple from a hurried delivery by forceps, is strong enough to cry.

The others are eerily quiet as they battle to survive in a hospital without power, clean water, and running out of essential medical supplies.

It remains the only medical option in the city of Tacloban for most survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, which may have killed thousands of people. The storm destroyed all but two hospitals in the city, one of them private. (Reuters)