Australia on standby to provide tsunami support

Australia is ready to assist Indonesia and surrounding region after an earthquake off the coast of West Java last night was followed by a tsunami, the Attorney-General Philip Ruddock said today.

The tremor was felt in Jakarta 355 km from the epicentre. Several small hotels along Pangandaran Beach have been destroyed with damage also to Cipatujah-Tasikmalaya, Cilacap and Kebumen.

Mr Ruddock said Emergency Management Australia (EMA) was on standby should Indonesia request any assistance.

"Australians magnificently responded to the Boxing Day Tsunami in 2004," Mr Ruddock said.

"We have continued to build on the strong relationship with the Indonesian emergency management agency to ensure that assistance can be provided efficiently."

Mr Ruddock said EMA is continuing to monitor active volcanoes throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Issued by the Attorney-General 18.07.06