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Volcano erupts in Indonesia days after devastating earthquake and tsunami

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Volcano erupts in Indonesia days after devastating earthquake and tsunami

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The eruption of Mount Soputan, on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, comes just days after the 7.5-magnitude earthquake and tsunami struck Palu, Indonesia killing more than 1,300 people.
USA TODAY

A volcano erupted Wednesday on the same island in Indonesia where an earthquake and tsunami last week killed at least 1,400 people. 

The eruption of Mount Soputan on Sulawesi island in central Indonesia prompted authorities to warn of possible lava flows and ash clouds that could impact air travel. Evacuations were ordered for those living within a few miles of the volcano. 

The eruption spewed ash 19,700 feet into the sky.

Scientists have not yet determined whether the eruption was directly triggered by the earthquake in central Sulawesi on Friday. However, Indonesian news portal Tempo cited a government volcanologist who suspected it was. 

Indonesia has many active volcanoes. It is also located in the so-called Ring of Fire, one of the most active areas for earthquakes in the world. 

President Donald Trump called Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Tuesday to offer assistance with both the emergency phase and reconstruction from the earthquake and tsunami that struck Sulawesi.

More: Indonesia tsunami: As desperation mounts, relief groups mobilize; here’s how you can help

More: No, the giant Katla volcano in Iceland isn’t about to erupt

In addition to the growing death toll, hundreds of people were severely injured in Friday’s disasters. With many roads blocked and key communication lines and infrastructure destroyed, food, water, fuel and medicine are struggling to reach the hardest-hit areas outside Palu, the largest city heavily damaged. More than 60,000 people have been displaced, according to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency. 

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