Indonesia evacuates hundreds of tourists after volcano erupts
JAKARTA: Indonesian rescuers on Wednesday evacuated hundreds of tourists from a volcano that erupted a day earlier and were searching for as many as 50 climbers.
Authorities closed the gates to Mount Rinjani, one of Indonesia's most visited active volcanoes on the resort island of Lombok, next to Bali, and told visitors to keep at least three km away.
The erupting cone is called Barujari, a volcano within Mount Rinjani.
The Disaster Mitigation Agency said 1,023 tourists, including 639 foreigners, were in Mount Rinjani National Park when the volcano erupted on Tuesday afternoon, coating nearby vegetation with ash.
"Hundreds of tourists have exited Mount Rinjani and they are in good condition," spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said on Wednesday.
Daniel Rosang, an official at the park, said he estimated there were up to 50 climbers still on the volcano and he believed they were safe.