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At least 271 people died in the 5.6 magnitude earthquake that hit the Indonesian island of Java on Monday, according to the latest report provided Wednesday. On the ground, the rescuers managed to get out alive a little boy who had been trapped under the rubble of a house for two days, without water and without food.
A six-year-old boy, Azka, was pulled alive from the rubble two days after an earthquake that killed at least 271 people in Indonesia, a rescuer told AFP on Thursday (November 23rd), rejoicing in a “miracle”.
The rescue was filmed on Wednesday night and has revived hopes of other survivors from the ruins caused by the earthquake that shook Monday near the town of Cianjur, west of the Indonesian island of Java.
“When we realized Azka was alive, everyone burst into tears, including me,” volunteer rescuer Jeksen Kolibu told AFP, speaking of “a miracle”.
A video filmed by smartphone shows the rescuers getting out of the rubble unscathed the boy, who had been without water and food for two days. A lifeguard, with a big smile, carries in his arms the boy dressed in a T-shirt and blue pants, while another runs behind to hold the child’s hand, in this video published by the district administration in Bogor, West Java.
The young Azka is filmed afterwards drinking a drink through a straw, while a rescuer strokes his hair. He was found next to his grandmother’s lifeless body, Jeksen Kolibu added, saved by a wall that withstood the shaking, preventing another wall from collapsing on top of him, local media reported.
“He was found on the left side of the house, on a bed. He was protected by a pillow and there was a space of 10 cm between him and a concrete wall”, detailed Jeksen Kolibu. “It was a very narrow, dark, hot place and the opening didn’t let in a lot of air.” “We did not expect him to still be alive after 48 hours, otherwise we would have made more efforts the night before” to find him, he regrets.
A third of the victims are children
More than a third of the victims of this earthquake are children, who were at school or at home when the earthquake occurred, according to data from the disaster management agency (BNPB).
But time is running out to find more survivors as rain and aftershocks slow the search. “Today the rescue services have deployed 6,000 people. It is raining but we are still searching,” said BNPB chief Suharyanto who, like many Indonesians, only has one name.
The latest toll, announced Wednesday evening by the authorities, is 271 dead, 40 missing and more than 2,000 injured.