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Mt. Merapi Erupts Again. At Least 6 More Killed

Massive molten lava and searing ash clouds shoot from the crater of Mount Merapi captured in this extended time exposure photograph taken from Klaten district in Central Java province before dawn on November 4, 2010.   SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP/Getty Images/AFP hide caption

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SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP/Getty Images/AFP

Mt. Merapi in Indonesia violently erupted today, sending ash 20,000 feet into the air. At least six people were killed. Reports from the scene describe soldiers loading villagers into trucks as rocks and ash fell from the sky. The government broadened the safety zone from 6 to 9 miles away from the volcano. That forced them to move three refugee camps for those who had already been evacuated from towns closer to the mountain. Scientists say things may get worse. From the AP:

"It looks like we may be entering an even worse stage," said Surono, a state volcanologist, who'd earlier said a week of continual eruptions appeared to be easing pressure behind the magma dome lodged in the Mount Merapi's crater. "We have no idea what's happening now."

A cloud of ash rises from the Mount Merapi volcano behind Butuh market in the Klaten district of Central Java on November 4, 2010. Indonesia ordered thousands more people to evacuate their villages as the volcano erupted again, shooting deadly gas and ash into the sky.  SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP/Getty Images/AFP hide caption

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SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP/Getty Images/AFP