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Strong quake hits eastern Indonesia.

6/16/2010 4:37:04 AM

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake has hit eastern Indonesia, triggering a tsunami warning early which was later lifted.

The quake, which struck off the eastern province of Papua on Wednesday, was initially reported as a magnitude 6.4.

The US Geological Survey said the quake was centred some 30km beneath the ocean floor off Papua's northern coast. It was followed by a strong aftershock.

There were no initial reports of damage or casualties but residents said the tremor caused panic.

Yan Pieter Yarangga, a resident from the town of Biak, said hundreds of people ran out of their homes and fled beaches with some racing for higher ground for fear of a tsunami.

"I ran too, I was afraid there would be a second quake,'' he said.

Wednesday's quake that hit Papua's coast was located more than 3,000km from the country's capital, Jakarta.

Indonesia straddles a series of fault lines that make the vast island nation prone to volcanic and seismic activity.

A giant quake off the country on December 26, 2004, triggered the Indian Ocean tsunami that killed 230,000 people, half of them in Indonesia's westernmost province of Aceh.

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Publication:Aljazeera.net
Geographic Code:9INDO
Date:Jun 16, 2010
Words:211
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