Several airports resumed operations on the heavily populated Indonesian island of Java yesterday, a day after they were forced to close due to a volcanic eruption that caused a 10-mile ash cloud.

More than 56,000 people were forced to flee their homes and four were killed when Mount Kelud erupted on Thursday in East Java province. It coated cities 500 kilometres away in a layer of ash. The environment ministry said yesterday air quality near the volcano remained "very unhealthy" as government response teams struggled to distribute food, masks and blankets.

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