Publication Date February 24, 2016

Cyclone-hit remote Fiji islands begin to receive aid, death toll 42

Officer in Charge of Air Movements at RAAF Amberley, Flying Officer Don Ninness, prepares Australian Aid before it is loaded onto a No. 36 Squadron C-17A aircraft destined for Cyclone Winston-affected Fiji at RAAF Base Amberley near Brisbane, February 23, 2016. Photo: Australian Defence Force, Reuters

The Fijian government and international aid agencies began delivering much needed aid on Wednesday to the Pacific nation's remote islands and coastal villages devastated by a powerful cyclone that killed 42 people.

The death toll has crept up in the days since Cyclone Winston struck Fiji late on Saturday as communication has gradually been restored with the outer reaches of the archipelago that is home to some 900,000 people.