Philippines looks for safer homes for volcano residents

International

TAGAYTAY, Philippines (AP) – Philippine officials say the government will no longer allow villagers to return to a crater-studded island where erupting Taal volcano lies. One official said Sunday that living on the island would be “like having a gun pointed at you.”

Taal volcano has simmered with smaller ash ejections in recent days after erupting on Jan. 12 with a gigantic plume of steam and ash. Officials have begun discussing post-eruption recovery even while the volcano remains dangerous and tens of thousands of villagers are still encamped in emergency shelter.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Ano said officials have been asked to look for a safer housing area for about 6,000 families that used to live and worked mostly as tourist guides, farmers and fish pen operators on Volcano Island.

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