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May 27, 2024
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Goma residents in panic as Nyiragongo erupts

DR. Congo’s Nyiragongo has erupted for the first time in nearly two decades, turning the night sky a fiery red and sending lava onto a major highway as panicked residents tried to flee Goma. There was no immediate word on any casualties, but witnesses say that the lava had engulfed one highway that connects Goma with the city of Beni in North Kivu province.

Early this morning, social media was awash with video clips of an erupting mountain, which later was confirmed to be Mountain Nyiragongo, a volcano located inside the Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

It is reported that the Lava approached Goma airport and moved towards the city centre of eastern Goma where a highway to Beni was cut off by the lava.

Authorities have urged residents from the city of Goma to evacuate. In this video, a number of people are seen moving with their belongings in the night trying to find shelter as the hot magma spread.

Mount Nyiragongo’s last eruption, in 2002, left hundreds dead and coated airport runways in lava. More than 100,000 people were left homeless in the aftermath, adding to the fear in Goma on Saturday night.

Rwandan immigration authorities reported that some 3,000 people already had officially crossed over from Congo to escape the volcano’s eruption.

Goma sits along the border between Congo and neighbouring Rwanda and is a regional hub for many humanitarian agencies in the region.

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