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Radio Waatea

06:30pm - 07:00pm
Ed Sheeran

Tonga devastated by cyclone

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Tonga is starting to clean up after a cyclone battered its main island Tongatapu, felling trees and power lines, damaging buildings and leveling Parliament House in the capital Nuku'alofa.

New Zealand has already pledged $750,000 for immediate relief with more to come, and a military plane is heading for the Pacific nation as soon as possible.

Cyclone Gita hit just before midnight with winds of up to 230 kilometres an hour.

New Zealand resident Tongan Will Ilolahia says it brought back memories of a cyclone he went through 30 years ago.

"It's not a good feeling. It feels like your house wil take off and that was a cycle with 100 kilometre an hour winds. Cycle Gita had winds of 230 km/h," he says.

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