Published: Пт, Октября 05, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Indonesian tsunami death toll rises to almost 1,350

Indonesian tsunami death toll rises to almost 1,350

The death toll from last week's quake and tsunami in Indonesia now stands at 1,234 and authorities fear it will drastically rise as they slowly make their way into areas cut off by the disaster.

The government is prioritizing the evacuation of victims, bringing in fuel and logistical supplies, and restoration of the electricity supply and telecommunications, which were still cut off in certain areas by Monday.

Volunteers in Palu prepared mass graves through the weekend to accommodate the high death toll.

Willem Rampangilei, chief of Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency, told ABC a huge grave, measuring 10m by 100m, will be dug in the city of Palu - one of the worst hit regions. Shortly after, a tsunami with waves of up to 18 feet (5.5 meters) hit the coast, leaving at least 844 people dead and dozens missing.

People were sleeping in the open, wary of returning to their homes. Because we already have people on the ground, we are able to minister to fellow believers in the AG churches. Authorities said that "tens to hundreds" of people were by the ocean in Palu for a beach festival when the tsunami struck on Friday.

People are also suffering from a lack of resources including food and clothing.

Commercial airlines have struggled to restore operations at Palu's quake-damaged airport, but military aircraft took survivors out on Monday.

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President Widodo authorised global aid on Monday and Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed his government has donated $360,000 with plans to provide a second round of aid.

The European Union, the U.S. and China are among more than 10 countries who have offered assistance.

But Australia's ambassador to Indonesia is consulting with the country's government on more support, with announcements due soon. More than 800 people were killed when the quake sent a tsunami barreling into the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.

Damaged roads and telecommunication channels have disrupted the distribution of aid and supplies in some areas.

Nugroho said that by far, 26 foreign countries and two worldwide organisations had offered relief aids to the Indonesian Government.

This aerial picture shows the remains of the Roa Roa hotel.

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