Twenty-five people died and hundreds were injured after the Fuego volcano of Guatemala erupted, authorities say.
The volcano, about 40 km southwest of the capital, Guatemala City, has been shedding rocks and black smoke. and ashes in the sky.
The National Disaster Management Agency (Conred) said that a river of lava hit the village of El Rodeo, destroying houses and burning people inside.
In Guatemala City, the La Aurora airport has been closed to ashes.
President Jimmy Morales said that a national emergency response had been launched.
"We believe there could be a state of devastation in at least three areas," said President Morales.
This eruption is the largest since 1974, according to local experts.
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Conrad chief Sergio Cabañas told a local radio station that a lava river had changed its course to El Rodeo.
"It is a river of lava that overflowed its banks and affected the town of El Rodeo, there are people injured, burned and killed.
" Unfortunately El Rodeo was buried and we could not reach the town of La Libertad due to the lava and maybe there are people who died there too. "
Later, Mr. Cabañas said that the dead included a member of his agency's staff.
Several children are among the confirmed dead.
Videos published by local media show corpses about a lava flow and rescuers serving people covered in ash.
A woman told the Central American Newspaper that the lava had poured through the corn fields and that she thought more people might have died.
"Not everyone escaped, I believe they were buried," said Consuelo Hernández.
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A total of 1.7 million people have "The authorities have advised citizens to wear masks due to the fall of ash, which has been raining in four of the administrative regions of Guatemala.
A spokesman for the disaster authority said that a change in the direction of the wind was the fault of the volcanic ash that fell in parts of the capital.
The Guatemalan military said it was providing rescue operations badistance to the creation of temporary shelters and cleaning volcanic ash from the La Aurora airport runway.