A CHARITY has travelled to Indonesia to aid with the rescue of survivors of the tsunami and earthquake.

Blackburn based charity Al-Imdaad travelled to the Indonesian Island of Sulawesi to help in the search and rescue of victims, and provide basic necessities to those now displaced.

Team leader and Al-Imdaad trustee Qari Ziyaad Patel and his team arrived in the city of Palu, one of the worst affected areas, and helped gather food supplies such as cooking oil, tinned fish, rice and noodles, to families taking shelter after their homes were ruined by the earthquake.

Mr Patel said they had also been working with the military, who were needed to reopen the airports after serious looting. On their arrival, they witnessed the destruction during assessments in the Balaroa area and Talise beach.

Balaroa is where the phenomenon of soil liquidisation took place. This is where solid earth had turned into a liquid consistency. Mr Patel said: "Even geologists were puzzled by the phenomenon.

"I thought I had seen enough in Haiti, but this is on an unprecedented scale. The hardest was seeing corpses and assisting with the retrieval of bodies." Mr Patel added it was highly unlikely any survivors would now be found, as many will have drowned after the tsunami.

Land routes had been blocked off by mudslides and other obstructions made access very difficult, but Mr Patel and his team will remain a few more days to help search for victims and help those in need.

By Friday October 5, the Indonesian Disaster Management Authority reported a 1,571 death roll, with 2,549 injuries and 113 missing. More than 70,000 people are reported to be displaced, with over 66,000 homes damaged.

Indonesia was hit with the 7.5 magnitude earthquake on Friday September 28, followed by a tsunami with waves up to 6 metres high.

To support these emergency relief efforts, donations can be made at www.alimdaad.co.uk.