No end in sight to volcanic eruption on Spain's La Palma - Canaries president


Lava spewed by the Cumbre Vieja volcano flows down a hill as it continues to erupt on the Canary Island of La Palma, as seen from Tajuya, Spain, October 17, 2021. REUTERS/Susana Vera

LA PALMA, Spain (Reuters) -There's no immediate end in sight to the volcanic eruption that has caused chaos on the Spanish isle of La Palma since it began about a month ago, the president of the Canary Islands said on Sunday.

There were 42 seismic movements on the island on Sunday, the largest of which measured 4.3, according to the Spanish National Geographical Institute.

"There are no signs that an end of the eruption is imminent even though this is the greatest desire of everyone," President Angel Víctor Torres said at a Socialist party conference in Valencia, citing the view of scientists.

Streams of lava have laid waste to more than 742 hectares (1833 acres) of land and destroyed almost 2,000 buildings on La Palma since the volcano started erupting on Sept. 19.

About 7,000 people have been evacuated from their homes on the island, which has about 83,000 inhabitants and forms part of the Canary Islands archipelago off northwestern Africa.

Airline Binter said it had cancelled all its flights to La Palma on Sunday because of ash from the volcano.

"Due to the current situation of the ash cloud, operations with La Palma will continue to be paralyzed throughout today. We continue to evaluate the situation," the airline tweeted.

Almost half - 22 out of 38 - of all flights to the island on Sunday have been cancelled, state airport operator Aena said, but the airport there remains open.

(Reporting by Graham Keeley; Editing by Pravin Char)

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