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Indonesia quake kills more than 50, injures hundreds and destroys homes

A 5.6-magnitude earthquake killed more than 50 people and injured hundreds in Indonesia's West Java province on Monday, with rescuers trying to reach survivors trapped under the rubble amid a series of aftershocks as night fell.

West Java GovernorRidwan Kamil confirmed 56 deaths from the quake, whose epicenterwas the town of Cianjur, about 75 km (45 miles) southeast of the capital, Jakarta, where some buildings shook and some offices were evacuated.

"So many buildings crumbled and shattered," Ridwan told reporters.

"There are residents trapped in isolated places ... so we are under the assumption that the number of injured and deaths will rise with time."

Indonesia straddles the so-called "Pacific Ring of Fire," a highly seismically active zone, where different plates on the Earth's crust meet and create a large number of earthquakes and volcanoes.

The national disaster agency (BNPB) said 23 people were likely still trapped under the rubble of collapsed buildings. More than 1,770 houses were damaged and nearly 3,900 people had been displaced in Cianjur, spokesperson Abdul Muhari said.

 

Electricity was down and disrupting communications efforts, Herman Suherman, head of Cianjur's government, said, adding that people in the area of Cugenang were unable to be evacuated because of a landslide blocking access.

Footage from news channel Metro TV showed what appeared to be hundreds of victims being treated in a hospital parking lot and some buildings in Cianjur reduced almost entirely to rubble as worried residents huddled outside.

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