The United States and Australian government sent their sympathies to the victims of the 7.2-magnitude earthquake that devastated central Philippines on Tuesday.
“The US extends our deepest condolences for the tragic loss of life and injuries as well as damage caused by the earthquake in Bohol, Philippines. America has always stood by the Philippines in times of need and we do so now,” a statement from the US Embassy in Manila said.
Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Bill Tweddell extended his government’s “heartfelt sympathies” for the loss of lives and destruction caused by the earthquake.
“The Australian government is working with our partners, including in the Philippine government, to obtain more information on the extent of damage caused,” its embassy in Manila said.
The earthquake killed upwards of 100 people and damaged some of the oldest buildings and facades in the tourist-heavy city of Cebu and Bohol.
Officials said that although the quake was centered in Bohol, Cebu had more deaths because it has a bigger population.
The quake heavily damaged some of the oldest churches in the city, including the iconic Santo Nino de Cebu church, which was founded in 1565.
Aside from churches, a mall and a hospital also suffered damaged.
Officials have warned the residents of the two cities to stay out of buildings because of the possible aftershocks, as well as landslides that may occur at any moment.
The Philippines is in the Pacific Rim of Fire.
BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON