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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Indonesian volcano death rate

Death toll from Indonesian volcano rises to 191.

Indonesian volcano News Updates! Indonesia says the number of people killed by its most volatile volcano has climbed to 191.

Muhammad Anshori, a disaster official, says the earlier toll of 153 did not take into account those who died of respiratory problems, heart attacks and other illness linked to Mount Merapi.

The volcano, one of the world's most active, roared back to life two weeks ago, spewing clouds of hot ash and gas into the air almost continuously, with lava, rocks and debris cascading down its slopes.

Continuous eruptions from an Indonesian volcano spewed clouds of ash into the skies Wednesday, forcing some international airlines to again cancel flights and President Barack Obama to cut short his visit.

Mount Merapi, hundreds of miles (kilometers) east of Jakarta, has belched volcanic debris high into the air for more than two weeks, killing at least 153 people and causing travel chaos.

Obama sliced several hours off his whirlwind 24-hour tour to Indonesia on Wednesday and flew to South Korea for the Group of 20 summit.

Syaiful Bahri, who oversees operations at Jakarta's international airport, said concerns about the ash also forced several international carriers to again cancel flights into and out of the capital. Among them were Cathay Pacific, Value Air, Qantas and Malaysia Air.

One of the world's most active volcanoes, Merapi has erupted many times in the last century, killing more than 1,400. But last Friday was the mountain's deadliest day since 1930, with nearly 100 lives lost.

Merapi was still issuing explosive roars as it shot clouds of gas and debris up to 3,000 feet (1 kilometer) in the air as ash and pyroclastic flows poured down its slopes.

Indonesia, a vast archipelago of 235 million people, is prone to earthquakes and volcanoes because it sits along the Pacific "Ring of Fire," a horseshoe-shaped string of faults that lines the Pacific Ocean.


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