BFF-08 Death toll in Indonesia quake rises to 164

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INDONESIA-EARTHQUAKE

Death toll in Indonesia quake rises to 164

MATARAM (WEST NUSA TENGGARA), Indonesia, Aug 9, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – The death toll from a

devastating earthquake on the Indonesian island of Lombok has risen above 160, an

official said Thursday, as authorities urgently appealed for medicine, food and clean

water for some 156,000 people displaced by the disaster.

Many frightened villagers are staying under tents or tarpaulins dotted along roads or in

parched rice fields, and makeshift medical facilities have been set up to treat the

injured.

Evacuees in some encampments say they are running out of food, while others are

suffering psychological trauma after the powerful quake, which struck just one week after

another tremor surged through the island and killed 17.

“The death toll rose to 164 people with at least 1,400 people seriously injured and

156,000 displaced,” national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told AFP.

Tens of thousands of homes, businesses and mosques were levelled by the quake, which

struck on Sunday as evening prayers were being said across the Muslim-majority island.

Local authorities, international relief groups and the central government have begun

organising aid, but shattered roads have slowed efforts to reach survivors in the

mountainous north of Lombok, which bore the brunt of the quake.

“We are still waiting for assessments from some of the more remote areas in the north of

the island, but it is already clear that Sunday’s earthquake was exceptionally

destructive,” Christopher Rassi, the head of a Red Cross assessment team on Lombok, said

in a statement.

He estimated 75 percent of houses are damaged in some villages in east and north Lombok.

“There are still some evacuees that have not yet been touched by aid, especially in

North Lombok and West Lombok,” Nugroho tweeted Thursday.

BSS/AFP/AU/08:05 hrs