10/30/2010, 00.00
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Ash and lava, a third eruption on Mount Merapi

by Mathias Hariyadi
The most violent since 26 October. Ash and lava plumes darken the sky of the city closest to the volcano, throwing the population into panic, including the rescue teams. Over 47 thousand refugees in camps set up by the government and parishes. Two died in the stampede that followed the last eruption.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) – A third eruption rocked Mount Merapi (Central Java) overnight, considered the most violent since eruptions first began on October 26, which killed 35 people. In Yogyakarta, the capital of the district, and cities closer to the volcano ash clouds and lava plumes have obscured the sky, plunging the population into panic, including soldiers and police rescue teams. The volcanologists say there will be more eruptions in coming days.

According to the National Agency for the management of natural disasters there are more than 47 thousand refugees housed in camps organized by local government. A Muntilan over 1000 people have sought refuge in the premises provided by the Church. Two people were killed in the stampede caused by this latest eruption of Merapi volcano. This was reported by Trisno Heru Nugoro, Sardjito hospital spokesman, while the television showed rescue efforts to evacuate residents, some of them reluctant to leave. Merapi, which in local language means mountain of fire, is 2,968 meters high and is considered one of the most dangerous explosive volcanoes in the world. Its hot moving gas clouds can develop temperatures of up to 1000 ° C and travel at a speed of 500 km / h.

Sacred for most of the local population, the volcano has marked the history of the population of the island of Java. The research of  Dutch geologist, Reinut Willem van Bemmelen, shows that in the tenth century, the civilization of Java was swept away by a huge eruption, forcing successive empires to reside on the east side of the island away from the volcano. The most devastating explosion is in modern times dates back to 1930 and claimed more than 1,500 lives. The last eruption occurred in 2006 and has cost the lives of two people.

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