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Volcano erupts in southern Chile; some people evacuated

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SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) -- A red stream of lava flowed down the flanks of the Llaima volcano in southern Chile on Tuesday and officials said they evacuated about a dozen people.

Emergency Bureau Director Carmen Fernandez said only some 50 people live in the "first risk ring" around the 9,400-foot (3,120-meter) volcano.

Bureau Vulcanologist Juan Cayupi said officials were monitoring the situation to determine if they will need to expand the evacuation to small villages in the region 650 kilometers (370 miles) south of Santiago.

Llaima is one of Chile's most-active volcanos. It erupted for about two weeks in January, forcing hundreds of tourists to evacuate from Conguillio National Park but causing no damage.

The long-dormant Chaiten volcano further south erupted in May, forcing the evacuation of some 4,500 people from the nearby town of Chaiten, which has since been largely destroyed by ash and by water from a river partially blocked by volcanic debris.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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