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6.8 magnitude earthquake jolts eastern Indonesia; reports no casualties

6.8 magnitude earthquake jolts eastern Indonesia; reports no casualties

Jakarta: North Maluku, a province in eastern Indonesia, was hit by a 6.8-magnitude earthquake on Friday morning, but no injuries or property damage were reported, according to officials.

The country's meteorology, climatology, and geophysics agency reported that the earthquake, which struck at 3:02 a.m. local time on Friday (2002 GMT Thursday) and had its epicentre located 133 kilometres northwest of Morotai Island district at a depth of 112 kilometres under the seabed, did not cause a tsunami.

The tremors of the earthquake were also felt in the nearby province of North Sulawesi, according to the agency.

So far, the tremors of the quake did not cause damage to buildings or infrastructure facilities, said Abdul Muhari, spokesman of the National Disaster Management and Mitigation Agency as quoted by Xinhua news agency report.

"There are no initial reports of damages or casualties after the earthquake," the spokesman told Xinhua on the phone.

"The residents in the Morotai Island district felt the tremors, but they were not panic," Yusri A Kasim, head of the emergency unit of the disaster agency in North Maluku province, told Xinhua by phone.

Indonesia sits on a vulnerable quake-hit zone called "the Pacific Ring of Fire".

With inputs from IANS

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