World Media

Aftershock jolts Indonesia's Lombok as death toll jumps to 259

Aftershock jolts Indonesia's Lombok as death toll jumps to 259

The Indonesian island of Lombok was shaken by a third big natural disaster in little more than a week on Thursday as the official death toll from the most powerful of the quakes topped 300.

Damaging aftershocks continue in Indonesia days after a powerful natural disaster hit the island of Lombak, as the country struggles to care for the injured and displaced and the death toll rises into the hundreds.

The 6.2-magnitude quake Thursday hit the northwest coast, where Sunday's 7.0-magnitude temblor had damaged tens of thousands of homes and displaced as many as 270,000 people.

Officials said about three-quarters of Lombok's rural north had been without electricity since Sunday, although power had since been restored in most areas before the aftershock.

A humanitarian crisis is also looming in Lombok, where thousands have been left homeless and in desperate need of clean water, food, medicine and shelter.

The quake affected the northeast side of the island and didn't have potential to cause a tsunami, Indonesia's geological agency said.

The quake caused some buildings to collapse, according to witnesses and Indonesia's meteorology agency.

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A powerful 5.9-magnitude aftershock has struck Indonesia's Lombok Island just four days after a 6.9-magnitude quake.

"The corpses are starting to smell and we believe some people buried are still alive - that's why it's a critical time", Nugroho said.

Meanwhile, the Red Cross said Tuesday all of the 2,000 tourists on the Gili Islands had now been evacuated.

Many Indonesian speakers took to Facebook either to tell friends and family that they were safe or to enquire about others.

But some evacuees have complained of being ignored or experiencing long delays for supplies to arrive at shelters. That number is set to rise as more victims are found in the rubble and pulled from collapsed buildings. "I do hope the government can help", she said.

A field hospital has also been established near an evacuation centre catering to more than 500 people in the village of Tanjung.

"People are always saying they need water and tarps", Spokesman Arifin Hadi told the AP about the current rescue efforts. Some villages have collapsed entirely.


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