Italy's Mount Etna spewing lava and ash
Hikers being brought down for safety amid high level of seismic activity
The Mount Etna observatory says lava and ash are spewing from a new fracture on the active Sicilian volcano amid an unusually high level of seismic activity.
The Etna observatory said a swarm of 130 tremors have been recorded by Monday midday, the most powerful registering a magnitude of 4.0. It reported lava flows from the volcano and said a new fracture had opened near its southeast crater.
The owner of a refuge on the volcano says hikers are being brought down from higher elevations to 1,900 metres for their safety. But there are no reports of injuries, and so far the spewing ash was not causing disruptions to residents of nearby towns and cities.
Etna, the largest of Italy's three active volcanoes, has been particularly active since July.
The volcano erupted with fire and a lava flow in March 2017 and in 2011.