18 Stories

Sword-Wielding Men Storm Indonesia Police HQ

Officers shot, killed 4 after latest militant attack

(Newser) - Indonesian police have shot dead four sword-wielding men who attacked a police headquarters in Sumatra, killing one officer in the latest in a spate of militant attacks across the Muslim-majority country. National police spokesman Setyo Wasisto says the men attacked officers Wednesday after driving a minivan into Riau province's... More »

Eruption 'Completely Annihilates' Mountain Peak

Mt. Sinabung has changed shape after volcanic blast

(Newser) - The eruption of Indonesia's Mount Sinabung that shot ash three miles high also blew away much of the mountain's summit. Before and after images from Indonesia's Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation show an enormous chunk missing from the peak, which it called "completely annihilated.... More »

Study Claims Discovery of New, Highly Endangered Great Ape

It's a frizzy-haired, smaller-headed orangutan

(Newser) - A remote population of frizzy-haired orangutans on the Indonesian island of Sumatra seems to be a new species of primate, scientists say. But the newest member of the family tree of advanced animals that include humans may not be around much longer, the AP reports. Their numbers are so small,... More »

Planned Virginity Tests in School Spark Brouhaha

Indonesian education chief's idea doesn't go over well

(Newser) - It's a decidedly more invasive test than one usually finds in schools: Sumatran education chief Muhammad Rasyid wants female high school students to undergo mandatory virginity tests "to protect children from prostitution and free sex," the Guardian reports. Al-Jazeera notes that he's backed off the idea... More »

Big Tobacco Shares the Blame for This

Industry has made smoking a national pastime in Indonesia

(Newser) - Chances are, you've heard about the video of the toddler in Indonesia puffing away on a cigarette like an old pro. Yes, it's an outrage to our sensibilities here in the West, and, yes, the kid's parents either don't know or don't care about the dangers. But while we're issuing... More »

Indonesian Ferry Sinks, Kills 25

Rescuers pull at least 243 from rough waters

(Newser) - Rescuers have saved 243 people from the Indonesian passenger ferry that sank today in rough waters off Sumatra island, but at least 25 people, including two children, have died, an official said. An unknown number of passengers were still missing, and search operations were called off after nightfall. A second... More »

Landslides Wipe Out 4 Indonesian Villages

Another 640 people feared dead in remote areas

(Newser) - At least four Indonesian villages were obliterated by earthquake-triggered landslides that buried as many as 644 people under mountains of mud and debris. Most of the victims were members of a communal wedding party. It's not clear exactly when the landslides occurred, but the full extent of Wednesday's 7.6-magnitude... More »

Miracle Rescue Lifts Hopes for 3,000 Trapped in Quake

Hopes dim as new emergency teams arrive in Indonesia

(Newser) - Rescue teams racing to find earthquake survivors in Indonesia pulled a young woman alive from the rubble of a collapsed school today, a rare glimmer of hope in the 2-day-old search. More than 1,000 people are reported dead, and difficult conditions in Padang are making it hard to reach... More »

Indonesia Quake Toll Passes 1,000

Samoa tsunami cleanup effort begins in earnest

(Newser) - The death toll in Indonesia has reached 1,100 and is expected to keep rising. Rescue workers are scrambling to find earthquake survivors under trapped buildings, with "many hundreds more" injured or missing, says a top UN relief official. Rescue efforts have been hung up over a shortage of... More »

Indonesian Quake Toll Passes 500, May Hit Thousands

Rescuers scramble to save victims trapped by two massive shakers

(Newser) - The final death toll in two massive Indonesia earthquakes may reach into the thousands as rescuers scramble to free victims still trapped in crushed buildings. "We need aid as soon as possible. We need food and medicine. Our houses have collapsed," said a resident of the bustling port... More »

More Quakes Slam Indonesia, Still Counting Its Dead

Witness describes crumbled, burning wreckage in Padang

(Newser) - Indonesia, still counting the dead and searching for the missing from yesterday’s 7.6 earthquake, was rattled by two more earthquakes this morning local time. The US Geological Survey recorded a 6.8 quake 140 miles from Padang, the western Sumatran city nearest yesterday’s epicenter; just 20 minutes... More »

Indonesia Quake Toll Hits 75; Thousands Trapped

Death toll at 75 and rising quickly

(Newser) - The powerful earthquake that rocked western Indonesia today has trapped thousands under collapsed buildings—including two hospitals—and triggered landslides. At least 75 people were killed on Sumatra island, and the death toll was expected to climb sharply. The magnitude 7.6 temblor comes a day after a quake in... More »

Tsunami Toll Reaches 100, Obama Sends Disaster Aid

Second earthquake near Indonesia triggers new wave warnings

(Newser) - The death toll from the tsunami triggered by last night's 8.3-magnitude earthquake near Samoa has risen to more than 100, with fatalities reported across a number of islands. Barack Obama declared American Samoa a disaster area and has pledged "swift and aggressive" aid to the territory, where at... More »

Poachers' Poison Slays Rare Elephant

Giant male ate spiked pineapples

(Newser) - A rare Sumatran elephant died after eating pineapples spiked with poison by poachers in northwestern Indonesia, officials report. The giant 30-year-old male, its tusks ripped out for the ivory, was the ninth Sumatran elephant found dead in the region in the last three months. At least seven of them were... More »

Sumatran Tigers Kill 3 in Indonesia

Illegal loggers were sleeping in Sumatran preservation

(Newser) - Sumatran tigers have killed six Indonesians in the last month, including three over the weekend. The latest victims include a father-son pair of illegal loggers who were attacked while they slept in a protected forest, AP reports. Sumatrans are the world's most endangered tiger subspecies. Poaching and forest destruction have... More »

Endangered Tigers Fading Fast

Numbers plummet as WWF calls for quick action

(Newser) - The World Wildlife Fund has warned that the world's tigers are in grave danger of extinction, reports the BBC. Experts believe tiger numbers have fallen in half over the last 25 years to as few as 3,500 worldwide, the WWF said. The South China tiger and the Sumatran tiger... More »

Tsunami Province Returns to Life

Community rebounds three years after disaster

(Newser) - Three years after it was hit by a devastating tsumani, Aceh is slowly returning to normal, Time reports. The disaster killed more than 160,000 people in the Sumatran province and wiped out much of its infrastructure. In the years since, aid from all over the world has helped Aceh's... More »

New Quake Hits Sumatra; Tsunami Warning Issued

Tsunami threat rattles coastal residents

(Newser) - Another quake rocked Indonesia's Sumatra island early this morning and the nation's meteorology agency has issued a tsunami warning. The quake, between 6.6 and 6.9 magnitude, was the latest to hit the island since Wednesday's powerful 8.4 tremblor set off a series of aftershocks. The latest tsunami... More »

18 Stories