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One minute silence for White Island victims

White Island shortly after the eruption. Photo: ARHT.

New Zealand has observed a one-minute silence to remember the victims of last week's eruption on Whakaari/White Island.

The minute of silence was held at 2.11pm, exactly one week after the volcano erupted.

Hundreds of people attended Te Manuka Tutahi marea in Whakatane this afternoon to observe the minute's silence.

Mayor of Whakatāne Judy Turner was one of hundreds of people to mark the moment. She says the mood was very calm, and gave locals a chance to consider how the town moves forward from the tragedy.

"You kind of go into a bit of doubt at times, a bit of denial yourself that this could happen here.

"I think there's a sense now where we are kind of - even as a district - accepting what happened and starting to over the next week or so look to how do we recover."

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Cabinet observed one minute of silence to remember victims of the Whakaari / White Island eruption. Photo: Pool photo.

Earlier today, police formally released the names of four more victims who died in the eruption.

They are Australians Jessica Richards, 20, Jason David Griffiths, 33, Martin Berend Hollander, 48, and Kristine Elizabeth Langford, 45.

The other victims that have been identified so far are New Zealander Tipene Maangi and Australians, Zoe Ella Hosking, 15, Karla Michelle Mathews, 32, Gavin Brian Dallow, 53, Anthony James Langford, 51, Krystal Eve Browitt, 21, Berend Lawrence Hollander, 16, and Matthew Robert Hollander, 13.

Police say the operation to recover the two remaining people missing on the island will continue for as long as there's a chance.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush says the Navy and police dive teams will be getting together to plan for another attempt at a search tomorrow. An aerial search with a helicopter will continue today.

Sixteen people have now died from the eruption last Monday. The latest confirmed death was of a patient transferred to Concord Hospital in Sydney for treatment.

There are still 26 people in hospital of whom 12 are in Australia after Australian Air Force planes last week transferred them to ease pressure on New Zealand hospitals and to allow the patients to be closer to their families. In New Zealand, 14 people are in hospital and 10 are in a critical condition.

RNZ.

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