A sleeping giant is about to come to life at the British colony of Montserrat in Eastern Caribbean. Eruptions and emissions of ash from a volcano dormant for centuries have sent almost 1,000 people scurrying from their homes.

Half of the 11,000 population at Montserrat only a section is likely to be affected if the 3,000 ft volcano starts spewing fire once again. The rumblings began a month ago, and have been ominously intensifying, ever since. So the government decided to begin the process of evacuation as a precautionary measure. "We were advised that given the increased seismic activity that has been taking place, we should move people from the east of the island," said Reuben Meade, the chief minister.

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