Residents evacuated after volcanic eruption melted glacier in Iceland

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Residents were evacuated near the Markarfljot river Thursday after volcanic eruption melted glaciers and caused flooding in southern Iceland.

The flood is rushing out from underneath the glacial tongue Gigjokull down the Markarfljot river channel near the eruption area. The speed reached approximately 10 kilometers per hour, reported the Icelandic national broadcaster RUV.

"There are giant icebergs in the river, the size of cars," said the Icelandic newspaper Iceland Review on its website.

The evacuation, done in 10 villages, is going well, the newspaper said.

Iceland's Civil Protection Authorities has sent a search and rescue team to help residents in the area.

"Road construction workers who were working on repairing the bridge across Markarfljot river have left the area," the newspaper added.

A volcanic eruption started under the Eyjafjalla glacier in southern Iceland on Wednesday. Massive volcanic ash affected air traffic in many countries in Europe.

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