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article imageErupting Philippine volcano forces troops and rebels to ceasefire

By Leo Reyes     Nov 24, 2010 in Environment
Mount Bulusan in Sorsogon province of southern Luzon in the Philippines, spewed ash as high as 1,000 meters up high in the air Wednesday, a volcanologist of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said.
The eruption status of the volcano remains on alert level 1 as Wednesday's ash explosion indicated a 'continuing unstable condition'
As the volcano continues to spew ash coupled with mild tremors, rescue and relief workers were concerned about safety and security of the affected residents who are currently in shelters and could not return to their homes for fear of unexpected volcanic explosion.
In view of the peace and security problem in the area, authorities and the rebel leaders agreed on a temporary ceasefire.
A temporary ceasefire was declared by the communist rebels against government forces in the six towns surrounding Bulusan volcano, said Samuel Guerrero, spokesperson of the Celso Minguez Command, in an email to local media on Wednesday.
Guerrero said the suspension of military operation, which took effect on Monday, would continue until the volcano normalizes.
He said the ceasefire would hasten relief operation by government disaster agencies and non government organizations.
The Army welcomed the ceasefire accord saying, "Our men, for a time, would not worry about surprise attacks by NPA rebels. We can fast-track the evacuation of villagers and the delivery of relief items in various evacuation camps.”
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