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Bali volcano could erupt any moment

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Thousands more have evacuated the Pacific island of Bali after seismic activity from Mount Agung increased on Monday, officials said.

All outdoor activities, such as hiking and camping, have been suspended around the crater in East Bali and an exclusion zone has been set up 9-12 kilometres from the 3000-metre-high volcano, which last erupted in 1963.

An estimated 25,000 people have been evacuated from the area.

Gunung Agung volcano in Karang Asem district is in the highest alert following rising seismic activity, forcing over 48,000 villagers living in the risky zone to flee, spokesman of the agency Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

"However, no one can predict exactly when there will be an eruption", it added.

The volcano, located some 50 miles from Kuta, a popular tourist destination, has been rumbling since August.

It last erupted in 1963, killing about 1,100 people.

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Indonesian holiday spot Bali's Mount Agung is on the verge of erupting.

The Coordinating Ministry of Maritime Affairs, the Ministry of Finance, Bank Indonesia and official bank partners of the IMF-World Bank meeting all reportedly donated to help those in need.

Miriam, an Australian woman flying from Bali's airport, said: "It's obviously an very bad thing". Heavy rainfall over the tropical island further generated cold lahars, which are a horrific slurry mix of pyroclastic material, rock, and water, and killed a further 200 people.

Latest analyses, made by the Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation, indicate that there is a potential for a big eruption in the near future. The U.S.is advising against any visits to the volcano, warning that an eruption could disrupt flights.

More than 35,000 people have fled a six to eight mile radius of the volcano, which is 3,000m above sea level, to temporary shelters, sports centres and village halls. "We take turns going back to feed them".

"The evacuation process is ongoing and we expect the number of evacuees to continue to rise", the agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told AFP. A government humanitarian effort is also underway with some 14 tons of aid sent.

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