12-year-old sacrificed his life to save Aprizol (14)

Aprizal Mulyadi (14) was at school as usual when an earthquake struck. Suddenly he found himself buried in ruins.

His twelve-year-old friend Muhammad Zulfikar managed to drag him out.

Then the roof collapsed as Zulfikar went to help another friend.

Zulfikar himself was buried. No one was able to save him in time.

– I was unable to help him, because my legs and back were injured. When he was caught, he told me that I had to save myself, says Aprizal Mulyadi to the AFP news agency.

RESCUE CREWS: Rescuers in Indonesia carry a victim after the earthquake near the city of Cianjur.  Photo: AJENG DINAR ULFIANA/Reuters

RESCUE CREWS: Rescuers in Indonesia carry a victim after the earthquake near the city of Cianjur. Photo: AJENG DINAR ULFIANA/Reuters

At least 268 died

The rescue work is still in full swing on Tuesday. The death toll has risen to 268 people. Many of the dead are school children.

A large number of people are still missing.

Bureau chief Suharyanto told reporters that another 1,083 people were injured in the 5.6-magnitude earthquake that struck Monday afternoon near the city of Cianjur.

The quake sent terrified residents fleeing into the streets, and caused buildings in the city to collapse.

DAMAGED: A local resident carries his injured daughter after the earthquake.  Photo: ADITYA AJI/AFP

DAMAGED: A local resident carries his injured daughter after the earthquake. Photo: ADITYA AJI/AFP

Could have been victims

A woman told The Associated Press that when the earthquake hit, her home began to “shake as if it were dancing.”

– I cried and immediately grabbed my husband and children, said the woman named Partinem.

Her house collapsed shortly after she escaped with her family.

– If I didn’t drag them out, we too could have been victims, she said.

COLLAPSE: A local resident looks at damaged houses in his town.  Photo: ADITYA AJI/AFP

COLLAPSE: A local resident looks at damaged houses in his town. Photo: ADITYA AJI/AFP

Authorities reported that more than 300 people were seriously injured and at least 600 were slightly injured.

Maximize search

In the village of Cijedil, northwest of Cianjur, the earthquake triggered a landslide that blocked streets and buried several houses, says Henri Alfiandi, head of the rescue service.

– We are maximizing searches where it is suspected that there are still victims after the earthquake. Our team is also trying to reach remote areas,” he said.

Furthermore, he says that for the rescue service all victims are a priority, and that their aim is to find them, save lives by getting them evacuated as soon as possible and get medical help.

RESCUE WORKERS: They search for victims under collapsed buildings.  Photo: ADEK BERRY/AFP

RESCUE WORKERS: They search for victims under collapsed buildings. Photo: ADEK BERRY/AFP

The first rescue attempts were hindered by destroyed roads, bridges and power cuts. In addition, there was a lack of equipment to help move the heavy concrete rubble. On Tuesday, the power supply and telephone communication had improved.

Trucks carrying food, tents, blankets and other supplies from Jakarta arrived early Tuesday in temporary shelters. Still, thousands spent the night in the open for fear of aftershocks.

Presidential visit

President Joko Widodo visited Cianjur on Tuesday to express his condolences.

VISIT: Indonesian President Joko Widodo hands out meals to local children at a shelter during his visit to Cianjur.  Photo: Laily Rachev/Indonesian Presidential Palace/REUTERS

VISIT: Indonesian President Joko Widodo hands out meals to local children at a shelter during his visit to Cianjur. Photo: Laily Rachev/Indonesian Presidential Palace/REUTERS

– On behalf of myself, and on behalf of the government, I want to express my deepest condolences to the victims and their families after the earthquake in Cianjur, he said after visiting survivors at a shelter.

He promised to rebuild infrastructure, including the main bridge connecting Cianjur with other cities, as well as providing government aid up to 50 million rupiah (around NOK 30,000) to each resident if houses were damaged.

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