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Java Quake Survivors at High Risk of Disease


Relief workers on Indonesia's Java island say people made homeless by last month's 6.2 magnitude earthquake are at risk of disease due to the lack of toilets and running water.

Officials say improving sanitation for earthquake survivors is a priority. They say there is an urgent need for latrines to be built in the earthquake zone, where wells and streams have become polluted with human waste.

Many roads in the worst-hit province of Yogyakarta were gridlocked Sunday with deliveries of aid for survivors of the quake, which killed more than 6,200 people on May 27.

Meanwhile, Malaysia has proposed setting up a regional relief center to improve the region's much-criticized response to emergencies. Critics say, in the past, donations of aid have not been delivered efficiently to disaster victims.

In addition to last month's earthquake and a tsunami that killed thousands in 2004, Java is bracing for a possible full-scale volcanic eruption from Mount Merapi, north of the quake zone. The volcano has been spewing lava, ash, and gases for weeks.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

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