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Death toll from Indonesian quakes climbs to 563

Ankara: The death toll from earthquakes that rocked eastern Indonesia since early August has risen to 563, according to a Social Affairs Ministry official on Saturday.

According to a statement by Harry Hikmat, the ministry’s director general for security, more than 7,000 people were also injured in the eastern island of Lombok.

Nearly 75,000 houses have been damaged and 431,436 people forced to leave their homes.

Two more earthquakes with magnitudes 6.3 and 6.9 hit the island after a magnitude 7.0 earthquake jolted Lombok on Aug. 5.

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In the last 20 days, at least 1,000 aftershocks were recorded on the island.

Authorities fear the death toll will rise further as search-and-rescue efforts are ongoing.

Reporting by Adem Salvarcioglu; Writing by Sena Guler

—AA

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