March 26, 2019
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Indonesia raises earthquake death toll to 321 on Lombok island

Jakarta, Aug 10 (efe-epa).- Indonesian authorities on Friday increased the death toll in a recent earthquake to 321 and said that 270,168 people had been displaced.

A 6.9-magnitude earthquake rocked Lombok island on Sunday, followed by numerous aftershocks.

"All the 321 fatalities have been verified. There are still unverified reports, therefore the number may still increase," National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) spokesperson Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said in a statement.

North Lombok was the worst-affected with 273 deaths, followed by West Lombok (26), East Lombok (11), Mataram (7), Central Lombok (2) and Denpasar (2) - capital of neighboring Bali island.

"The number of displaced population will increase as not all data have been collected," added Sutopo.

67,857 houses, 468 schools, six bridges, 50 praying rooms, 20 offices, 15 mosques and 13 health centers have been damaged.

Provisional calculations by the BNPB estimate damages to the tune of three trillion rupiahs ($207 million).

Sutopo said that hundreds of nonprofit and community organizations were active on the island as humanitarian aid and assistance kept flowing in.

"Assistance were distributed straight to temporary shelters," he said, adding that search and rescue operations were still underway.

Lombok has suffered more than 451 aftershocks since Sunday's earthquake, including one of 5.9-magnitude on Thursday.

On July 29, another magnitude-6.4 earthquake hit Lombok and left 16 people dead, 355 injured and destroyed 1,500 buildings.

The Indonesian archipelago is located along the so-called "Pacific Ring of Fire," an area known for its intense seismic and volcanic activities, which records around 7,000, mostly moderate, earthquakes each year.

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