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Cotopaxi volcano eruption in Ecuador evacuates 400 people

At least 400 people have been evacuated amid increasing activity in Cotopaxi volcano, near the capital Quito.

Two minor explosions on Friday at Cotopaxi led to a precautionary evacuation. The volcanic eruptions have shot ash more than five kilometres into the sky.

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa declared a state of emergency. It allows the president to immediately mobilize security forces throughout the country and lets the government block publication of information related to Cotopaxi, Reuters reported.

A yellow alert has been maintained in the region and would remain as long as Cotopaxi continued to stir.

Cotopaxi volcano, snow-capped and one of the world's most dangerous volcanoes, is close to heavily populated area around Quito.