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40 die in Indonesian landslides

Published 04/03/2007

At least 40 people are now known to have died after three separate landslides on a remote island in eastern Indonesia.

Scores more people are believed to be buried under the mud on the island of Flores.

Authorities battled blocked roads to deliver emergency aid to the affected districts and help dig for survivors, said the chief of the health authority's Crisis Centre Rustam Pakaya.

"We have not been able to get heavy machinery to the villages, because landslides have also cut off the main road to the area," he said.

Seasonal downpours cause dozens of deadly landslides and flash floods each year in Indonesia.

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