Amanda Casanova | Religion Today Contributing Writer |
Authorities found some 34 bodies of children in an Indonesian church after an earthquake and tsunami pummeled an Indonesian island Friday.
Red Cross spokeswoman Aulia Arriani said the children were attending a Christian bible camp when they were killed. Officials expect to find more bodies as the death toll continues to rise.
According to reports, more than 1,300 people died in the disasters.
Volunteers in the area are working on digging a mass grave for the dead.
Meanwhile in Palu, a military plan carrying supplies was unable to land because of crowds at the airport.
“There was a fear of the crowd mobbing the plane,” a representative for an aid organization said. “People are so desperate for aid.”
Other reports say that stores have been “cleaned out” of supplies and there has also been some looting.
“Security on the ground is not great,” the aid worker said. “There’s no power, there’s limited food and no access to clean water … Our biggest concern is the security of our staff and making sure that their supplies will be going to the most needy.”
Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman for Indonesia’s National Disaster Mitigation Agency, said tsunami detectors buoys were not working, but a tsunami warning was still issued.
But many in Palu did not receive the warning because of power outages.
Nugroho also added that about 50,000 people have been displaced from their homes.
Yenni Suryani, of Catholic Relief Services, said power was still out “almost everywhere” and staff is having trouble reaching affected areas.
According to reports, the earthquake was a 7.5 magnitude quake and tsunami waves were as high as 20 feet.