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5 killed in Fiji cyclone

Fiji cyclone

SYDNEY – Fiji was assessing the damage yesterday after one of the most powerful storms recorded in the southern hemisphere tore through the Pacific island nation, flattening remote villages and killing at least five people.

Reports of damage are still flowing in from remote spots across the archipelago of about 300 islands devastated late on Saturday by tropical cyclone “Winston,” which packed winds of 230 kilometers per hour that gusted up to 325 kph.

Several hours of harsh winds and torrential rains tore up homes and cut power, water, and communications links across the nation of about 900,000 people, but the capital, Suva, escaped the brunt, after a last minute change in direction of the storm. (Reuters)