Indonesia landslides death toll rises to 119, dozens missing

Indonesian women walk past a house damaged by flood in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)
Indonesian women walk past a house damaged by flood in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

The death toll from mudslides in eastern Indonesia has risen to 119 with scores still missing as rain continued to pound the region and hamper the search

LEMBATA, Indonesia (AP) — The death toll from mudslides in eastern Indonesia has risen to 119 with scores still missing, officials said Wednesday, as rain continued to pound the region and hamper the search.

The village of Lamanele on Adonara island suffered the highest losses with 60 bodies recovered so far and 12 missing. Mud tumbled down from surrounding hills early on Sunday, catching people at sleep.

On nearby Lembata island, the downpour triggered by Tropical Cyclone Seroja sent solidified lava from a volcanic eruption in November to crash down on more than a dozen villages, killing at least 28 and leaving 44 unaccounted for, according to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency.

Hundreds of police, soldiers and residents dug through the debris with their bare hands, shovels and hoes searching for those buried. On Tuesday, relatives wailed as they watched rescuers pull out a mud-caked body, place it on a bamboo stretcher and take it away for burial.

In all, landslides and flooding have killed at least 119 across several islands in Indonesia as well as 27 people in neighboring East Timor. Thousands of homes have been damaged and thousands of people displaced by the weather, which is expected to continue until at least Friday as the storm moves south toward Australia.

Rescue efforts were being hampered by the rains and the remoteness of the area, where roads and bridges were damaged in many places.

Rescue personnel with excavators and tons of food and medicine were being deployed from Makassar city on Sulawesi island, but were hindered by a lack of sea transportation. National Disaster Mitigation Agency chief Doni Monardo called on the private sector to support relief efforts.

Three helicopters began reaching isolated areas of the islands on Tuesday, and President Joko Widodo held a Cabinet meeting in Jakarta to speed up the operation.

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Karmini reported from Jakarta, Indonesia.

Women clear flood debris in the village in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, easter Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)
Women clear flood debris in the village in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, easter Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

A collapsed retaining wall sits along the banks of a flooded river in Dili, East Timor, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Several disasters brought on by severe weather in eastern Indonesia and neighboring East Timor have left a number of people dead or missing. (AP Photo/Kandhi Barnez)
A collapsed retaining wall sits along the banks of a flooded river in Dili, East Timor, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Several disasters brought on by severe weather in eastern Indonesia and neighboring East Timor have left a number of people dead or missing. (AP Photo/Kandhi Barnez)

Credit: Kandhi Barnez

Credit: Kandhi Barnez

People watch as an excavator clears debris at a flood-affected area in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)
People watch as an excavator clears debris at a flood-affected area in Waiwerang, on Adonara Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Rofinus Monteiro)

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

Credit: Rofinus Monteiro

People stand amid rocks and debris as they inspect the damage at a flood-affected village in Ile Ape on Lembata Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Ricko Wawo)
People stand amid rocks and debris as they inspect the damage at a flood-affected village in Ile Ape on Lembata Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Rescuers in remote eastern Indonesia were digging through the debris of a landslide Tuesday in search of people believed to be buried in one of several disasters brought on by severe weather in the Southeast Asian nation and neighboring East Timor. (AP Photo/Ricko Wawo)

Credit: Ricko Wawo

Credit: Ricko Wawo

People who are displaced by floods shift through donated clothings at a temporary shelter in East Lewoleba, on Lembata Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Multiple disasters caused by torrential rains in eastern Indonesia and neighboring East Timor have left a number of people dead or missing as rescuers were hampered by damaged bridges and roads and a lack of heavy equipment. (AP Photo/Ricko Wawo)
People who are displaced by floods shift through donated clothings at a temporary shelter in East Lewoleba, on Lembata Island, East Nusa Tenggara province, Indonesia, Tuesday, April 6, 2021. Multiple disasters caused by torrential rains in eastern Indonesia and neighboring East Timor have left a number of people dead or missing as rescuers were hampered by damaged bridges and roads and a lack of heavy equipment. (AP Photo/Ricko Wawo)

Credit: Ricko Wawo

Credit: Ricko Wawo

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