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    Survivors sift through rubble with their bare hands

    Hürriyet Haber
    30.03.2005 - 11:44 | Son Güncelleme: 30.03.2005 - 11:44

    Survivors of the 8.7 magnitude quake that hit the Indonesian island of Nias just off Sumatra late Monday night are using their hands to comb through rubble in search of their loved ones. Remaining residents fear that people are dying under the ruins because the island is lacking the necessary equipment to rescue people quickly.

    Nias deputy chief Agus Mendrofa said, "There are still a lot of victims under the rubble and we don't have enough earth moving equipment to get them out quick enough."

    The main airport is not operating following the great quake and a helicopter landing pad has been set up on a football field in the main town of Gunung Sitoli.

    Aid workers were already in the region with regards to aid efforts being carried out for the December Tsunami victims and have rushed to the island to help out in rescue efforts. UN disaster teams are on site. Aid being sent by plane and ship have already arrived from Australia and SIngapore.

    Many residents are still hiding in the hills after seeking shelter from fears of another Tsunami.

    "Many of the victims fled to the hills they are so traumatized. Many of them have not come back yet", said Dino Patti Djala, an Indonesian government spokesmen.

    Bodies lay everywhere and the stench of death encircles the island. Sumatra Governor Rizal Nurdin estimates up to 1,000 people have died. Although these numbers are not yet confirmed.

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