People survey the damage following a massive earthquake and tsunami at Talise beach in Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, Monday, Oct. 1, 2018. Bright-colored body bags were placed side-by-side in a freshly dug mass grave Monday, as a hard-hit Indonesian city began burying its dead from the devastating earthquake and tsunami. (AP Photo/Tatan Syuflana)

Disaster undoes hard-won progress for Indonesian port city

October 02, 2018 - 1:45 am

BANGKOK (AP) — Palu, the Indonesian city devastated by an earthquake, tsunamis and mudslides, is a fishing port that has sought to build itself up as a major trading hub.

The disasters that struck late Friday left the city's port in ruins, its lone gantry crane atilt in the water. Its airport terminal was a sea of shattered glass and broken ceiling panels. The city's buildings and other infrastructure were no match for the triple whammy of catastrophes.

Ringed by coconut, coffee and cocoa farms, Palu has big ambitions. Over the past two decades, it's acquired modern shopping malls, hotels, bridges, a new airport terminal and other amenities.

Given how seismically active the area is — the Palu-Koro fault runs right through the city — it's been a race against the odds.

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