French surfers found alive on quake island

31st March 2005, Comments 0 comments

JAKARTA, March 31 (AFP) - Twelve missing foreigners were found safe and sound Thursday on a quake-hit Indonesian island, the Swedish ambassador in Jakarta said.

JAKARTA, March 31 (AFP) - Twelve missing foreigners were found safe and sound Thursday on a quake-hit Indonesian island, the Swedish ambassador in Jakarta said.

Envoy Lennart Linner told AFP the surfers - two Swedes, two French, an American, two Germans, three Britons and two Canadians - had been found in a surfing resort on the south of the devasted island of Nias.

"It was their first encounter with the outside world" since Monday's quake which left hundreds dead, he said.

The British and Swedish embassies in Jakarta chartered a helicopter to the island's Lagundri Bay, a popular surfing beach, amid mounting concern for the safety of the foreigners.

Despite the mobilisation of a huge aid effort for the main town of Gunung Sitoli, where hundreds are believed to have been killed, Linner said the chartered helicopter was the first aircraft to reach the surfing resort.

"We're working on how to get them back," he said.

He said some of the foreigners had been sleeping outside since Monday night's magnitude-8.7 quake destroyed buildings in the area.

Britain's foreign office said earlier that fewer than 10 of its citizens were listed as missing on the island. Australia meanwhile is waiting for word on five of its citizens believed to have been in the area.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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