Indonesia's Mount Soputan erupts

JAKARTA (Bernama): Mount Soputan in Indonesia's North Sulawesi province spewed a column of ash up to four kilometres on Wednesday (Oct 3), a disaster agency official said.

The volcanic ash headed westward and northwestward of the crater, national disaster management agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

Rain of ashes is projected to fall in the northwest of the crater, and local disaster agency officials had distributed masks to the folks, the spokesman told Xinhua news agency in a text message.

An exclusion zone was declared about four kilometres from the crater and extended to 6.5km for the areas situated in the southwest of the crater by the country's volcanology agency, said Sutopo.

Residents living near rivers whose upstream are around the flank of the volcano have been warned to exercise caution, particularly during rain, over the risk of fast-moving flows of cool lava.

North Sulawesi province is located next to Central Sulawesi province which is reeling from the risk of powerful quakes that triggered a tsunami last Friday, leaving over 1,249 people dead. - Bernama
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