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Jakarta Post

Special Forces to join rescue operation on Mt Rinjani after earthquake

  • Panca Nugraha

    The Jakarta Post

Mataram   /   Mon, July 30, 2018   /   04:38 pm
Special Forces to join rescue operation on Mt Rinjani after earthquake Getting ready: Personnel of the Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus) arrive at Lombok International Airport in Central Lombok on Monday. The elite team will join the search and rescue team on the ground. (Courtesy of Wirabhakti Mataram Military Command/-)

At least 140 Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus) personnel have been flown from its headquarters in Cijantung, East Jakarta, to Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, to take part in a rescue operation on Mount Rinjani, in which 500 hikers -- about one-third of whom are foreigners – became trapped after a 6.4-magnitude earthquake triggered a landslide.

The soldiers, who arrived at Lombok International Airport in Central Lombok on Monday afternoon, will join a search and rescue team on the ground.

“They will ascend [the mountain] from Sembalun in East Lombok regency to the location of the trapped hikers,” Wirabhakti Mataram Commander Col. Ahmad Ramdhani said on Monday in Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara.

Rizal said the rescue operation could end on Tuesday.

“Assuming the weather is good, we may finish the operation by tomorrow afternoon,” he said.

The earthquake struck Lombok and Sumbawa islands on Sunday at 6:47 a.m. local time, killing at least 16, including a Malaysian. (swd)