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Death toll from volcano nears 100

The death toll from Indonesia's volcano has climbed to nearly 100 in more than a week after a blistering gas cloud ripped through a mountainside village.

Hospital spokesman Heru Nugroho said 54 bodies were brought in after the inferno.

More than 66 others were injured, many of them critically with burns.

Men with ash-covered faces streamed down Mount Merapi on motorcycles followed by truckloads of women and crying children, following the massive eruption.

Soldiers helped clear the bodies from the hard-hit village of Bronggang, located nine miles from the crater, and up until Friday considered within the "safe zone".

The death toll since the initial eruption on October 26 - including 44 killed before Friday's massive gas burst - stood at 98.

Press Association

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