A lava flow reached the airport of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)'s eastern city of Goma on Sunday after the eruption of the nearby Mount Nyiragongo volcano and authorities have announced evacuation plans, local media reported.
- He added that the government is studying the immediate measures that should be implemented. Tedesco said the volcano has some of the fastest lava in the world.
Goma sits on the mountain's southern flank and overlooks Lake Kivu.
"The sky has turned red", one resident, Carine Mbala, told AFP by telephone.
The evacuation plan for Goma has been activated, said government spokesman Patrick Muyaya. Nearly all of the eastern part of Goma is covered in lava, including half of the airport runway.More news: Top Republican senators divided over January 6 commission
The Goma region, which lies in North Kivu province, bordering Rwanda and Uganda, has six volcanoes, all higher than 3,000 metres.
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Goma: Congo's Mount Nyiragongo exploded for the first time in approximately two decades on Saturday.
"The situation is deteriorating", an official from Virunga National Park - where the erupting volcano is located - said in a message to staff, which AFP was copied in on. "The situation seems to have calmed down for the moment", one resident said.
The Nyiragongo volcano, located not far from the DR Congo's border with Rwanda, started to erupt on Satuday.More news: Vaccinated people in USA no need to wear mask, physically distance
The eruption of the volcano is similar to what it was in 2002, according to the National Park authorities, and demanded that residents near the airport vacate the place immediately.
Others fled to the city centre from villages and neighbourhoods threatened by lava on the northern outskirts.
Volcanologists in the area said earlier that there would be no danger to the city, but that many people have already fled to the border with Rwanda.
Volcano watchers have been anxious that volcanic activity observed in the last five years at Nyiragongo mirrors that in the years preceding eruptions in 1977 and 2002. Shortly after the volcano erupted, electricity was cut off in large parts of the city.
- The dark evening sky shines with hot red skin, says an AFP correspondent in Goma.More news: Israel steps up assaults in Gaza with shells, airstrikes
In a May 10 report, the Goma Vulcanology Observatory warned that seismic activity around the volcano had increased and warranted careful monitoring.