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Volcano shoots ash three miles high

An Indonesian volcano has shown no sign of returning to sleep after erupting once again, shooting black ash 3km high.

People living 8km away felt Mount Sinabung’s latest rumbling, after it lay dormant in North Sumatra province for more than 400 years.

Many scientists were surprised by its return to activity, which began last week and has seen more than 30,000 people living its sides moved to safer ground in refugee camps, mosques and churches in nearby villages.

Some farmers have insisted on going home to check their property and crops, despite scientific fears that these small eruptions could herald a much bigger explosion in the coming weeks or months, but were brought back to safety by government trucks before this latest eruption.

Surono, who heads the nation’s volcano alert centre, said there was increasingly intense volanic activity before the most recent blast, with more than 80 volcanic earthquakes in the preceding 24 hours, compared with 50 earthquakes last Friday, when the subsequent explosion sent ash and debris almost two miles up.

Indonesia has 129 volcanoes and is located on the so-called “Ring of Fire” - a series of fault lines stretching from the West through Japan and south-east Asia.

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