GUATEMALA CITY – The eruption of a volcano near the Guatemalan capital subsided on Thursday after 20 hours of activity that rained ash on nearby communities and prompted an orange alert, a spokesman said.
The eruption of the Volcan de Fuego ("Fire Volcano") sent ash towering 1.7 kilometres into the sky and raining down on at least eight communities, said David de Leon, an emergency services spokesman.
Authorities announced an orange alert earlier on Thursday, and schools near the volcano, which is 35km southwest of Guatemala City, were shut.
The Volcan de Fuego, one of three active volcanos in Guatemala, triggered alarm in September 2012 when it erupted, causing the evacuation of 10,000 residents living nearby.
It is located very close to Antigua Guatemala, a colonial-era town very popular with tourists in the Central American country. — AFP