Indonesia earthquake death toll tops 400 as more bodies recovered

By AFP | Monday, Aug 13th 2018 at 16:28
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The death toll from an earthquake on the Indonesian island of Lombok has topped 400, authorities said on Monday, as bodies were still being recovered from the ruins of destroyed buildings.

The shallow 6.9-magnitude quake on August 5 levelled thousands of homes, mosques and businesses in Lombok, just a week after another tremor surged through the island and killed 17.

"Search and rescue teams are still removing victims who were buried beneath collapsed buildings and landslides," said national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

The total number killed in the quake is now 436, Nugroho said, with more than 1,300 injured and nearly 353,000 displaced.

The hardest hit region of Lombok has been in the north, where 374 people died and more than 137,000 have been forced from their homes, according to the latest official tolls.

Most of the displaced are sleeping under tents or tarpaulins near their ruined homes or in evacuation shelters, while makeshift medical facilities have been set up to treat the injured.

Split open roads, particularly in the mountainous north of the island, are still proving to be a major headache.

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