- A violent South Pacific volcanic explosion that took place on Saturday has Tonga covered in ash, triggering tsunami waves into its capital.
- So far, no deaths have been reported, and rescue operations are underway.
A mammoth volcanic eruption took place over the weekend, causing tsunamis to hit Tonga.
The eruption has severed communication and covered the island kingdom in ash. As per reports, up to 80,000 Tongan residents might be affected.
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NZ sends surveillance aircraft to make an initial assessment of the damage
On Sunday, the Tsunami-hit Tonga remained majorly uncontactable, with telephone and internet links severed, causing concerns among the Tongan community in New Zealand, who are desperately wanting to contact their relatives and loved ones back home.
Experts opine that the drinking water might be contaminated by volcanic ash and have urged the residents to wear face masks to protect their lungs.
Some churches in Auckland and elsewhere have organised community prayers for the well-being of the Tongan residents.
Nuku'alofa, Tonga's capital, is covered in a thick blanket of volcanic dust; however, as of now, conditions are said to be calm and stable, and no fatalities have been recorded.
Power has been restored in some regions causing local mobile phones to work.
Both New Zealand as well as Australia have sent surveillance flights to assess the damage to determine the next phase of response efforts, while the US has also pledged its support to the island nation.
Tongan residents have been told to remain vigilant for further eruptions and should avoid visiting low-lying areas, currently.