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No damage and no tsunami threat from offshore Indonesia quake

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By Reuters

(Reuters) – A magnitude 6.5 earthquake that struck off the coast of Indonesia’s Tanimbar Islands on Saturday caused no damage and created no threat of a tsunami, Indonesian authorities said.

“The quake was felt faintly for around two to three seconds,” Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman for Indonesia’s Disaster Mitigation Agency, said. “There was no panic in Tiakur and Saumlaki, areas close to the epicentre.”

Conditions were “safe” near the epicentre and there were no victims or property damage, Nugroho said.

The U.S. Geological Survey recorded the quake as centred at sea 279 kilometres (173 miles) west of the town of Saumlaki in Indonesia’s remote Tanimbar Islands.

Indonesia’s Meteorolgy and Meteorological, Climatological and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) said there was no tsunami potential from the quake, which was recorded at 162 kilometres deep.

Indonesia sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire and is regularly hit by earthquakes.

In 2004, the Indian Ocean tsunami killed 226,000 people in 13 countries, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.

(Reporting by Agustinus Beo Da Costa; Writing by Louise Heavens and Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Mark Heinrich and Peter Graff)