1 Mar 2006

2,000 people again evacuated from PNG's Manam island

4:25 pm on 1 March 2006

A reported 2,000 people are to be evacuated from Manam Island in Papua New Guinea after its volcano erupted again at the weekend.

The latest eruption has seen ash and scoria blasted over the island and lava is flowing down several valleys.

Don Bivi from the Manam Island Humanitarian Implementation Committee says the eruption is more severe than one in October of 2004 which saw the population of 9,000 moved to the mainland.

He says about 2,000 people had returned temporarily to the island over recent weeks.

"Basically to collect the harvest and then to return to the care centres. It is not that we are allowing them to stay there permanently but just to go and see their gardens and collect whatever food they have and then come back to the care centres where they are currently residing."