14 killed, scores displaced in southern Sumatra clashes

KALIANDA, INDONESIA (BNO NEWS) -- Violent ethnic clashes on the Indonesian island of Sumatra continued for a third day on Tuesday, raising the death toll to at least fourteen as more than 1,600 others have been displaced, local authorities said on Wednesday.

The violence erupted on Sunday in the district of South Lampung, on Sumatra's southern tip in the province which carries the same name. At least four people were killed on Sunday while ten others died on Sunday, a provincial police spokesperson confirmed on Wednesday morning.

South Lampung Police Resort Adjutant Senior Commander Tatar Nugroho told the Antara news agency that most of the bodies were found as police combed the plantations in the area's farm land. In addition, nine other people were found injured and suffering from gunshot and stab wounds.

A number of buildings have also been set on fire, including residential houses, two school buildings, vehicles and motorcycles. The violence between the largely Balinese Hindu community in the village of Balinuraga and the predominantly Muslim village of Sidoreno has forced more than 1,600 people to flee the area.

Police forces have since been deployed to the area to increase security, but tensions remained high on Wednesday with fears new clashes could break out. The initial violence began after two local girls from Agom village crashed while riding their motorcycles and claimed boys had been teasing them, causing the accident.

(Copyright 2012 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

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