Heavy rain and bad roads hampered the search for 20 people missing after this week’s deadly landslide in Indonesia’s West Java province, officials said Wednesday.
At least 15 people died when the landslide buried houses in a village in Sukabumi regency on Monday, National Disaster Management Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said, calling it the biggest landslide to hit the area in 50 years. The government of Sukabumi has declared a seven-day emergency response period.
Another 20,000 people have been evacuated from coastal areas along Indonesia’s Sunda Strait, officials said Friday, as the volcano that caused last week’s tsunami continued to rumble.
Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman of the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB), said 40,386 people had been pulled out of coastal communities of Banten and Lampung provinces, which were devastated when a huge chunk of the Anak Krakatau volcano collapsed into the sea on Dec. 22, spawning waves that surged inland and killed over 400 people.
Hadi Azmi and Mariyam Ahmad
Kuala Lumpur and Pattani, Thailand
The new Malaysian facilitator of peace negotiations in southern Thailand has reached out to insurgents not yet participating in those talks and launched a “dialogue process” with them, he told BenarNews on Thursday.
The revelation came as he confirmed that he would meet in Bangkok on Jan. 4 with the chief Thai negotiator in the talks, who was among those urging a hardline faction of the Barisan Revolusi Nasional (the National Revolutionary Front or BRN) to come to the table in recent weeks.
Political leaders in Indonesia’s troubled Papua province urged the National Human Rights Commission on Monday to send a team to investigate violence in Nduga regency that killed about two dozen people this month.
The heads of the Papuan Representatives Council (DPR Papua) and Papuan People’s Assembly (MRP) made the calls after security forces allegedly killed four civilians during an anti-insurgency operation last week that followed the slayings of 19 construction workers and a soldier by separatist rebels.
Dennis Jay Santos
Davao City, Philippines
Communist rebels in the Philippines declared a unilateral Christmastime ceasefire on Friday, apparently unaware that troops had arrested a senior consultant of the insurgent group and his wife earlier in the day.