Mount Merapi, in central Java, Indonesia, erupted several times on Monday afternoon, with lava spewing down the volcano's southern and southeastern slopes. Three major eruptions were recorded, and other eruptions may have occurred, but thick clouds were obstructing observations of the mountain. Additionally, some 500 volcanic earthquakes have been recorded on the mountain over the weekend.
|Merapi Volcano, Central Java, Indonesia. Attribution: Panoramio|
The volcano has seen increased activity over the past week, which has led officials to raise warnings to the highest level for the volatile volcano, and to warn villagers in threatened areas to move to safer ground. People living within a 10km (6 mile) zone, some 40,000 people, have been told to evacuate.
Mt Merapi last erupted in June 2006, killing two people. In a 1994 eruption, 70 people were killed by an other eruption, and in 1930 the volcano killed 1,300 people.