Deadly volcano gas cloud ups toll to 56
THE death toll from Indonesia's fiery volcano has climbed to 56 after a blistering gas cloud ripped through a mountainside village, writes Slamet Riyadi.
Rescuers say at least 12 people were killed in the inferno and 50 others were hospitalized with injuries.
Meanwhile, eruptions appeared to be intensifying yesterday as towering clouds of ash shot from the crater, dusting towns up to 250 kilometres away.
The government repeated orders to airlines to stay clear of the unpredictable mountain.
Mount Merapi, which means "Fire Mountain", is one of the world's most active volcanoes.
Experts have been baffled by its erratic behaviour since its first October 26 eruption, which has been followed by more than a dozen other powerful blasts.