New Zealand’s White Island volcano erupted suddenly on Monday, prompting fears for a group of visitors seen walking on the crater floor moments before.
The country’s National Emergency Management Agency said a “moderate volcanic eruption is occurring at White Island and is hazardous in the immediate vicinity of the volcano.”
Cameras providing a live feed from the volcano showed more than half a dozen people walking inside the rim at 2:10 pm local time (0110 GMT), before images went dark when the eruption occurred minutes later.
The local mayor said she feared there had been “injuries” in the eruption.
“I’ve got limited understanding at present other than there’s been an eruption, that there have been some people who were on the island at the time, who have had some injuries,” Whakatane mayor Judy Turner told Radio NZ.
“I’m not sure of the extent or nature of those injuries… emergency services are all waiting for them to be returned from the island so they can attend to them.”
Police said they were responding to the incident, but offered no further comment.
White Island is New Zealand’s most active volcano cone and about 70 percent of it is undersea, according to government agency GeoNet.
Around 10,000 people visit the volcano every year. It has erupted frequently over the last half-century, most recently in 2016.
In August of that year the New Zealand Defence Force airlifted a 2.4-tonne shipping container onto the island to serve as an emergency shelter in case of an eruption.
Five things to watch for at the Grammys
Music's glitterati will sparkle on the red carpet at this Sunday's Grammy awards, which honors the top hits and artists of the year.
Scandal at the Recording Academy, which puts on the show, has overwhelmed the lead-up to the glam event, but there are still plenty of musical moments to watch for.
Here is our quick guide to the event, which will take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles:
- Women poised to lead -
Women dominated at last year's gala and are leading the pack this year as well, with the twerking flautist Lizzo and the teenage goth-pop phenomenon Billie Eilish expected to battle for the top awards.
Mexican children take up arms in fight against drug gangs
With baseball caps and scarves covering their faces, only their serious eyes are visible as a dozen children stand to attention, rifles by their side.
In the heart of the violence-plagued Mexican state of Guerrero, learning to use weapons starts at an early age.
In the village of Ayahualtempa, at the foot of a wooded hill, the basketball court serves as a training ground for these youths, aged between five and 15.
The children practice with rifles and handguns or makeshift weapons in various drill positions for a few hours every week.
"Position three!" yells instructor Bernardino Sanchez, a member of the militia responsible for the security of 16 villages in the Guerrero area, which goes by the name of Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities (CRAC-PF).
Delta fined $50,000 for discriminating against Muslim passengers
Delta Air Lines was Friday fined $50,000 by the US Department of Transportation to settle allegations it discriminated against three Muslim passengers who were ordered off their planes.
In its consent order, the department said it found Delta "engaged in discriminatory conduct" and violated anti-discrimination laws when it removed the three passengers.
In one incident on July 26, 2016, a Muslim couple were removed from Delta Flight 229 at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris after a passenger told a flight attendant their behavior made her "very uncomfortable and nervous".
"Mrs X" was wearing a head scarf and the passenger said "Mr X" had inserted something into his watch.