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Passengers stranded as flights grounded across Java

The ash from the eruption of Mount Kelud has submerged planes and grounded flights. Credit: Reuters

Flights across Java in Indonesia have been grounded and seven airports have been closed after a volcanic eruption yesterday evening.

Seven airports across Indonesia's most densely populated island have been closed, and thousands of passengers remain stranded.

Planes have been grounded across Java, and seven airports have been shut. Credit: Reuters

The only major airports still operating on Java are two in the capital, Jakarta.

Volcanic eruption prompts mass evacuation in Indonesia

More than 100,000 people have fled their homes in Indonesia's most densely populated island of Java following the eruption of Mount Kelud.

The area around Mount Kelud, one of Indonesia's 130 active volcanoes, has been evacuated. Credit: Reuters

The volcanic eruption sent a huge plume of ash and sand 10 miles into the air, officials said. National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Nugroho said:

"Over 100,000 people have been evacuated and about 200,000 people were affected.

"There are some people in the 10-km (6-mile) radius but they are being evacuated now so that area is empty."


Corby photographed in prosecutor's office after release

Schapelle Corby has been taken to a prosecutor's office in Bali following her release from Kerobokan jail.

Convicted Australian drug trafficker Schapelle Corby has her head covered as she sits in the Denpasar Parole board office. Credit: REUTERS/Jason Reed

It is believed the 36-year-old Australian drug smuggler, who was convicted in 2005, will now live with her sister who lives on the island. The former beauty therapist is unable to leave Bali until 2017.

Schapelle Corby is escorted by police following her release from jail in Bali. Credit: REUTERS/Jason Reed

Australian Foreign Minister welcomes Corby's release

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has welcomed the released of Schapelle Corby, who has been released on parole after serving nine years in a Balinese jail.

Former beauty therapist Schapelle Corby pictured in 2005. Credit: Reuters

"The decision by Indonesia's minister for law and human rights is welcomed," Ms Bishop told the Australian.

"I understand that now the decision to grant parole has been made is a matter for the authorities to determine the time of the release but I hope that she's now given some privacy as she gets her life back together," she added.

Convicted Australian drug smuggler freed from Bali jail

Convicted Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby has been released on parole after serving nine years in a Balinese prison.

Schapelle Corby will not be able to return to her home country of Australia until 2017. Credit: Reuters

Corby - who has always protested her innocence - was convicted of smuggling 4.2 kilograms (9 pounds) of marijuana onto Bali and sentenced to 20 years in prison in 2005.

In 2010, she asked for clemency, citing her poor mental state. Two years later in 2012, Indonesia's president cut her sentence by five years.Corby, 35, will have to stay in Bali and cannot return to Australia until 2017.


Indonesia volcano erupts killing at least 16 people

At least 16 people have been killed by Indonesia's Mount Sinabung volcano, which erupted yesterday after becoming increasingly active in recent months.

Villagers run as Mount Sinabung erupts at Sigarang-Garang village in Karo district, Indonesia's North Sumatra province. Credit: Reuters

It is the first time it is known to have claimed any lives, a senior government official confirmed.

The government has evacuated tens of thousands of residents near the area.

Lion found hanged in the 'zoo of death'

A lion has been found hanged to death in his own cage in an Indonesian zoo notorious for premature animal deaths.

The Surabaya Zoo in Indonesia. Credit: Reuters

The 18-month-old African lion, named Michael, was strangled by a steel wire in his cage in Surabaya Zoo - which has been dubbed the "zoo of death" by local media.

A zoo official claimed the hanging was an accident and not caused by animal neglect.

The zoo in Indonesia's capital Jakarta is notorious for its poor conditions, where around 25 animals die prematurely each month, according to officials speaking in 2010.

A Sumatran tiger died after eating meat laced with formaldehyde - a chemical preservative - and a giraffe was found dead with a ball of plastic weighing nearly three stone in its stomach, the Jakarta Globe reported.

18 mourners 'killed in road crash' in Indonesia

An overcrowded van with dozens of mourners has slammed into a truck on the main Indonesian island of Java, killing 18 people and injuring 14 others, according to the Associated Press.

Police officer Captain Mustofa says the van was carrying a group of 29 mourners from East Java's Probolinggo town who were on their way to pay respects to a relative.

He said today the vehicle was moving uncontrollably and collided with a trailer truck. The occupants were thrown from the van and 15, including two children, died instantly. The others died in hospital. The driver has been arrested for reckless driving.

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