Police deployed to Ambae

A patrol boat loaded with police and mobile force personnel was being deployed to the Vanuatu island of Ambae yesterday afternoon to help with a mass evacuation.

A state of emergency has been declared on the island, with the volcano at the island’s centre continuing to erupt, blanketing much of the island in ash.

The government announced last week that a mass evacuation would again take place, with people from the islands north, west and south being moved to the far east coast or nearby smaller islands.

A spokesperson for the National Disaster Management Office, Presley Tari, said food supplies are being distributed by the provincial government, and the patrol boat was leaving Port Vila yesterday.

Mr Tari said the mass evacuation will begin once the forces arrive and establish themselves which is likely to be later on this week.