6.9-magnitude earthquake jolts southern Philippines

Manila: A6.9-magnitude earthquake struck off the southern Philippine island of Mindanaoon Saturday, monitors said, adding that a tsunami threat was possible for partsof the Philippines and neighbouring Indonesia.

Thequake struck southeast of Davao City at a depth of 59 kilometres (35 miles),the US Geological Survey said, while the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said“hazardous tsunami waves from this earthquake are possible” along thecoasts of Indonesia and the Philippines. However tsunami waves were forecast tobe less than 30 cm high, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said. ThePhilippines’ government seismology office said cities in the south of thecountry felt “moderately strong” shaking.

Theprovincial civil defence office said it had no immediate reports of damage orcasualties from the quake. According to the USGS, there was a low likelihood ofcasualties and damage, although it warned recent earthquakes in the area hadcaused landslides. The Philippines and Indonesia lie on the so-called Ring ofFire, a vast Pacific Ocean region where many earthquakes and volcanic eruptionsoccur.

Themost recent major quake disaster to strike the Philippines was in 2013 when a7.1-magnitude quake left more than 220 people dead and destroyed historicchurches in the central islands.

Indonesia has been hit by two major tsunamis this year. More than 400 people were killed last weekend after an erupting volcano triggered a deadly wave that struck the coastlines of western Java island and south Sumatra. A quake-tsunami in September killed around 2,200 people in Palu on Sulawesi island, with thousands more missing and presumed dead.

By AFP

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