Refugees of Mt. Gamalama eruption need blankets, mats

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Thousands of refugees in nine shelters in Ternate, North Maluku affected by the eruption of Mt. Gamalama needed blankets and mats to prevent the spread of illness.

Dozens of evacuees have been admitted to hospital as they were suffering from high fevers.

Zainab Ismail, 47, one of the refugees, said due to the lack of blankets and mats, some refugees had to use cardboard to cover their bodies at night and they were sleeping with wet bodies.

“We are asking the government to provide us with mats and blankets. There are many children and senior citizens in the shelters,” Zainab said Wednesday as quoted by

Evacuees also claimed they lacked ready-to-eat food as the local government had yet to provide communal kitchens in the shelters.

However, Ternate Mayor Burhan Abdurahman said the city’s administration had carried out all necessary measures to help the refugees.

“I think we have made our maximum efforts; even now, we are trying to provide basic necessities for the refugees, including blankets and mats,” he said.

Mt. Gamalama spewed a flood of cold lava on Tuesday, killing three residents and injuring five others.