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Indonesia's Mount Lokon erupts

JAKARTA, April 24 (Xinhua) -- Indonesia's Mount Lokon in North Sulawesi Province erupted at 10:20 Jakarta time (0320 GMT) on Tuesday, an official said here.

Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, head of Data Center, Information and Public Relation at the National Agency for Disaster Management ( BNPB), said that the eruption height is not known as it is covered by clouds.

"Tremor is felt 5 kilometers away from Tompuloan crater," said Nugroho.

However, he said, people are not urged to take refuge.

The government has urged people not to make any activity at the distance of 2.5 kilometers below the crater.

"Luckily, there is no residence across the distance," said Nugroho.

Nugroho added that there is potential of another eruption.

He also said that the Quick Response Unit of BNPB, who had flown to the scene, provided assistance to North Sulawesi Regional Agency of Disaster Management and Tomohon City Agency of Disaster Management, the location of the volcano.

"People are urged to stay calm and increase alertness," said Nugroho.

Hayke, head of North Sulawesi Regional Agency of Disaster Management, told Xinhua that the eruption, occurring several times in a few months, is expected to further release the volcano's energy.

He also said that the authorities have maintained danger status of level III.

Previously, Surono, head of Center of Vulcanology and Geological Disaster Hazard Mitigation, said that the volcano was in a critical condition following increased activities.

"There are once tectonic distant earthquake, twice local tectonic earthquakes, 13 times deep volcanic earthquakes and about 50 times shallow volcanic earthquakes," said Surono on Monday.

He had said that if such activities continued, the volcano would erupt.


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