MOUNT MERAPI, Indonesia — Towering clouds of hot ash gushed from the
mouth of Indonesia's deadly volcano Thursday, hours after its most
explosive eruption in a deadly week sent screaming women and children
fleeing mountainside villages and emergency shelters.
As rocks and debris rained from the sky late Wednesday, soldiers forced
villagers into trucks and carried them down the rumbling mountain.
Several abandoned homes were set on fire and dozens of carcasses of
incinerated cattle littered the scorched flanks.
No new casualties were reported after that fiery blast or a pre-dawn
eruption Thursday, which spewed searing clouds of gas and ash nearly
four miles (6 kilometers) into the air.