Residents evacuated from Tiaka Island

Palu, Central Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - Police evacuated residents from Tiaka Island on Monday following rioting in which angry mobs tried to destroy an oil well belonging to a consortium of PT Pertamina and PT Medco Energy, police said.

"Angry mobs pelted the oil well which has a high H2S content with molotov cocktails. If the oil well explodes it will release dangerous poison. Therefore we decided to evacuate local residents who are all employees of the Pertamina-Medco consortium," Chief of Morowali Police Resort Adjunct Senior Commissioner Suhirman said here on Monday.

Tiaka Island is located in Mamosalato subdistrict, Morowali district, Central Sulawesi province.

Suhirman could not provide more details yet because police were still busy evacuating residents. They were evacuated using motor boats with a capacity of about 60 passengers each.

The situation was still tense and Suhirman said he still did not know whether there were casualties in the incident.