Officials in the province say at least 69 people have died there and many were listed as missing.

 

With communciations down it was impossible to know whether the missing were dead or simply unable to alert family or the authorities that they had survived.

 

Mustafa Abu Bakar, Aceh's acting governor, said that army helicopters and navy vessels had been deployed to deliver aid and help in the rescue efforts in the remote areas.

 

Another 31 have died in neighbouring North Sumatra, including 22 people killed in a landslide after getting approval to return home following an earthquake last week.

 

The authorities have blamed heavy rains as well as the effects of deforestation for the destruction.

 

Lack of adequate forest cover leaves the ground less able to absorb excess water.