Widodo arrives in Lombok after the earthquake to help the victims
by Mathias Hariyadi

The tremor that yesterday struck the popular tourist resort killed 14 people, seriously injuring another 162. More than a thousand homes were damaged. Indonesia’s president ordered the distribution of funds for basic necessities. Rescuers are at work to evacuate the last tourists stranded on Mount Rinjani.

Makassar (AsiaNews) – Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo arrived this morning on Lombok to oversee rescue operations. Then island was hit yesterday by a 6.4 earthquake on the Richter scale.

The tremor killed at least 14 people, injured another 162 people and damaged about a thousand homes.

One of the victims was a Malaysian tourist, Siti Nurmada, who died as a result of the collapse of the hotel where she was staying.

The president ordered the distribution of funds to quake victims to buy basic necessities and has requested the immediate evacuation of tourists stranded on Mount Rinjani, the only volcano on Lombok Island. Some 850 visitors were located yesterday on the mountain.

Despite the tragic event, life on the island goes on. Lombok is considered one of Indonesia’s foremost tourist resorts, attracting both Indonesian and foreign visitors.

Just a few nautical miles from its north-west coast lies the world-famous Gili Trawangan Island, second only to Bali for the number of tourists.

Indonesia, an archipelago of thousands of islands, is located on the so-called Ring of Fire around the Pacific Ocean, an area with high seismic activity, often hit by earthquakes, many of which are harmless.

However, seismic events are closely monitored given the high risk of tsunami.