Body of missing British woman found in Tonga

The body of a British woman swept away by a devastating tsunami that struck Tonga has been found, her brother said in a statement received Tuesday.

A massive underwater volcanic blast near the Pacific island on Friday has left neighbouring countries scrambling to assess the full extent of the damage, with the tiny nation cut off from the world.

The first confirmed death was Angela Glover, a 50-year-old who ran a stray animals charity, who was reported missing by her husband after the tsunami hit.

“Earlier today my family was sadly informed that the body of my sister Angela has been found,” her brother Nick Eleini said.

The woman’s husband, James Glover, who ran a tattoo shop in Tonga, had confirmed the death to the family, Eleini said.

The brother told AFP he understood Glover managed to relay the news by using a satellite phone at the British high commission in Tonga.

Communications from the country have been crippled after an internet cable was severed during the volcanic eruption.

The couple were washed away when the tsunami hit, Eleni told British newspaper The Guardian.

He said he believed the pair were on the west coast of Tonga’s main island, Tongatapu, when the tsunami struck.

“James was able to cling on to a tree for quite a long time, but Angela was unable to do so and was washed away with the dogs,” he said.

His sister had established the Tonga Animal Welfare Society to help the island’s stray dogs, an emotional Eleini said from the family’s home in England.

“The funny thing was, the uglier the dog, the more she loved it,” he said.

Eleini, who lives in Sydney, said he understood his sister was trying to rescue the couple’s dogs when she was swept away.

Her last Instagram post was photos of the sunset after Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano erupted in the early hours of January 14.

“We’ve been under tsunami warnings today,” she wrote, noting that the situation remained calm with a few swells and electrical storms.

But, she added, “everything looked like I was watching through an Instagram filter.” — Agence France-Presse

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