Over sixty dead in Indonesian landslide

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The Independent Online

At least 62 people were killed and hundreds were missing as a landslide buried part of a village on a remote Indonesian island, government officials said on Wednesday.

Rescue workers were on their way to Sambulu village on Nias Island, about 100 kilometers (60 miles) off the northwest coast of Sumatra Island, said Abdurrahman Nasution, a local government official.

He said at least 103 houses were destroyed in the landslide on Tuesday.

Nasution said villagers were searching through the rubble for survivors and had reported that 62 people had been killed. Several hundred residents were still unaccounted for.

The authorities were not able to confirm the death toll, he said. "We will send aid soon," he added.

Nias is about 780 miles northwest of Jakarta.

Although Indonesia is in the middle of its annual dry season, there has been an unseasonal amount of rainfall in parts of the country.

Much of Sambulu village was still underwater on Wednesday, officials said.

Flooding and landslides kill hundreds of people in Indonesia every year. Officials and environmentalists say deforestation by loggers and villagers needing firewood contribute to the disasters.