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Aftershocks rock Indonesia's Lombok as quake death toll tops 300

09 August 2018, 09:37 | Glen Norman

Aftershocks rock Indonesia's Lombok as quake death toll tops 300

Aftershocks rock Indonesia's Lombok as quake death toll tops 300

Another quake with a magnitude of 6.2 hit Indonesia's Lombok Island on Thursday.

Local authorities, worldwide relief groups and the central government have begun organising aid, but shattered roads have slowed efforts to reach survivors in the mountainous north and east of Lombok, which bore the brunt of the quake.

And in late July, another 6.4-magnitude natural disaster in Lombok killed 16 people and damaged hundreds of houses.

"It is already clear that Sunday's natural disaster was exceptionally destructive", Christopher Rassi, the head of a Red Cross assessment team on Lombok, said in a statement.

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.

Officials said the quake's epicentre was on land and so there was no risk of a tsunami.

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Indonesia has been rocked anew by an quake with a magnitude of 5.9, according to the United States Geological Survey.

Witnesses have reported buildings collapsing in the latest series of tremors to hit the island - following Sunday's fatal natural disaster in Lombok.

Lombok was hit by another quake on Thursday, the third in a little over a week, causing panic, injuries and damage to buildings.

Emergency workers are gradually starting to reach more remote areas of Lombok as they continue their rescue missions.

Another Indonesian government agency has put the figure at 381, a significant increase from figure of 131 reported on Wednesday.

Nyoman Sidekarya, chief of the provincial search and rescue agency that covers the Indonesian island of Lombok, tells The Associated Press that the death toll from the quake that hit the island on Sunday is now 227. He says the agency has sent 20 water trucks to five remote areas, including one village of about 1,200 households.

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'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.

According to authorities, more than 156,000 people have been displaced and tens of thousands of homes have been destroyed, BBC reports.

Aid groups say children are particularly vulnerable, with many sleeping in open fields and suffering illnesses from lack of warm clothing and blankets.

Wiranto said the government will develop a plan to rebuild communities on Lombok, which like its more famous neighbour Bali is a popular tourist destination with powder-white beaches, mountains and a lush interior.

Indonesia sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire and is regularly hit by earthquakes. In December 2004, a massive magnitude 9.1 quake off Sumatra triggered a tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries. "For example, how we can deal with the number of damaged houses, mosques, schools, hospitals".

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