Aceh quake triggers panic

A strong earthquake has rocked parts of Indonesia's Aceh province, causing panic among residents in tsunami-ravaged area.

    Acehnese are still recovering from the 26 December tsunami

    There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

     

    The magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck near southern Aceh's

    Singkil town and its surrounding areas at 11.30am (0430

    GMT), said Muslih, an official at the Meteorology and

    Geophysics Agency, on Saturday.

     

    Muslih said the

    quake strongly jolted Singkil, but so far there were no

    reports of its effects.

     

    A

    ndayani, an official at the local district office, said

    many panicked city-dwellers ran out of their houses when

    the quake struck.

     

    "Thank God, we have not heard of any damage or casualties

    so far," Andayani said.

     

    The private El Shinta radio reported that the quake also

    jolted Nias island in North Sumatra province, also causing

    panic among villagers.

     

    Seismic upheaval

     

    Indonesia, the world's largest archipelago, is prone to

    seismic upheaval due to its location on the so-called

    Pacific Ring of Fire, an arc of volcanoes and fault lines

    encircling the Pacific Basin.

     

    The devastated region's residents 
    remain on edge about tremors

    Aceh, on the northern tip of Sumatra Island, was the

    hardest hit by the 26 December magnitude 9 quake and subsequent

    tsunami that killed more than 176,000 people in 11

    countries, 131,000 of them in Aceh alone.

     

    Three months later ,another strong tremor killed more than

    900 on Nias and smaller surrounding islands, also in

    western Indonesia.

     

    Earthquakes of magnitude 6 and below are not considered

    strong enough to trigger a tsunami.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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