A disaster official says flash floods and a landslide triggered by torrential rains in eastern Indonesia have killed at least eight people and left three others missing and believed buried by debris.

Disaster official Sutopo Purwo Nugroho says rescuers retrieved four bodies Wednesday that had been buried by mud in Sirimau village in the capital of Maluku province, Ambon. Four other people drowned in Batumeja hamlet. Rescuers are still searching for three others believed to be buried by the landslide.

The twin disasters have forced 754 people to flee to temporary shelters, and five were hospitalised with injuries. More rain is forecast.

Seasonal downpours cause frequent landslides and flash floods in Indonesia, a chain of 17,000 islands where millions live in mountainous areas or near fertile flood plains.

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