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Dozens feared dead in landslide at illegal Indonesian gold mine

Rescuers with the Indonesian National Search and Rescue Agency prepare to head out to the landslide site BASARNAS via Associated Press/Photographer uncredited

Dozens feared dead in landslide at illegal Indonesian gold mine

Rescue workers on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi on Tuesday resumed a search for more than 30 people still missing after a landslide struck the island Sunday. The landslide killed at least 23 people at an illegal gold mine, according to Indonesia's National Search and Rescue Agency. At least 66 people have been rescued and nearly 400 people assisted with the search effort, the leader of the regional search and rescue office told media. Unlicensed mines are common across the Indonesian archipelago, but flooding is rare during July, according to Channel News Asia, an English-language news group based in nearby Singapore.

What triggered the disaster? Torrential rains over the weekend caused the landslide and sparked floods throughout the region, said National Disaster Management Agency spokesman Abdul Muhari. More than 100 villagers were digging for gold on Sunday when mud buried their makeshift camps, Heriyanto said. More than 1,000 people fled to nearby villages to escape the flooding and landslides.

Dig deeper: Read Amy Lewis’ report in World Tour about landslide survivors rebuilding in Papua New Guinea.

Lauren Canterberry

Lauren Canterberry is a reporter for WORLD. She graduated from the World Journalism Institute and the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism, both in 2017. She worked as a local reporter in Texas and now lives in Georgia with her husband.

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