Tsunami victims are ever-increasing by the minute as Indonesia’s most volatile volcano unleashed its most powerful eruption in a deadly week, discharging searing clouds of gas and fragments thousands of feet into the air. There were no immediate reports of new casualties.

Hundreds of miles to the west, a break in weather was helping rescuers get aid to victims of an 18ft-high tsunami that slammed into several remote islands, sweeping entire villages into the sea. The twin disasters occurring simultaneously on opposite ends of the seismically charged country killed nearly 500 people in the last week, while severely testing the government’s emergency response network. In both cases, the military has been called in to help.

Almost all villagers living along Mount Merapi’s rumbling slopes have been evacuated, some forcibly by camouflaged troops, though many have returned to their homes during the day to check on livestock and crops.