Typhoon Mangkhut Pummels Hong Kong, Southern China

A satellite image shows Typhoon Mangkhut as officials begin evacuations

Typhoon Mangkhut, a category five storm, could bring winds of more than 280km/h. Communication is cut from many areas and high winds are preventing responders, meaning it's too early for a full assessment of damage.

The typhoon struck at the start of the rice and corn harvesting season in the northern breadbasket, prompting farmers to scramble to save what they could of their crops, Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba said.

"We have no other means to survive", she said through tears.

The latest victims were mostly people who died in landslides, including a family of four. Waves as high as 7.3 m (24 ft) were sighted in the Taiwan Strait, Xinhua said.

Mangkhut, a Thai word for the mangosteen fruit, is the 15th storm this year to batter the Philippines, which is hit by about 20 a year and is considered one of the world's most disaster-prone countries.

Villagers lift electric wires in the typhoon-hit town of Lal-lo, Cagayan province, the Philippines on Saturday.

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HONG KONG/MANILA - A supertyphoon swirled towards Hong Kong and the Chinese coast on Sunday, gaining in strength over the South China Sea after hurtling through the Philippines, where it wreaked havoc that killed at least 25.

Before the storm made landfall, Civil Defense used that knowledge to pre-position hundreds of thousands of food packs.

Shop windows were taped up and the normally traffic-clogged streets were deserted as the storm drew nearer.

The government warned people to stay indoors but some were strolling in parks or along the waterfront on Sunday morning.

"I went running this morning".

"I'm so anxious also nervous because of course they are our church members as well as our relatives, our families are there because according to them this is one of the strongest typhoon that visited the Ilocos Norte", Corpuz said. "On normal days we can't see this", said Hao Chen, 28, who lives in the neighbourhood of Tin Hau, on Hong Kong Island. Buildings swayed as sustained winds of about 96 miles per hour continued to slam against them.

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"We're anxious for the 10 million people in the Philippines living in the path of this destructive storm, including those who have been displaced several times due to the monsoon rains last July and August", Richard Gordon, chairman of the Philippines Red Cross, said in a statement.

China and the Philippines agreed to postpone a visit by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi that was to start Sunday due to the onslaught, which caused almost 150 flights, a third of them worldwide, to be canceled and halted sea travel.

The government in the Chinese region of Macau has shut down all of the areas 42 casinos in anticipation of the storm.

The storm will make its closest brush with Hong Kong around noon local time, side-swiping the densely populated city on its way to China's Guangdong province. It's only the 15th time in the last 60 years that a T10 alert has been hoisted; the last was for super typhoon Hato last year.

In a bulletin issued 5 am on Sunday, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Ompong is already 480 kilometers west northwest of Laoag City, Ilocos Norte.

Further down the coast preparations were also underway in Zhanjiang, where some villagers feared for the worst.

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