Strong earthquake struck off Indonesia's Talaud islands

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Jakarta – A strong earthquake struck off North Sulawesi province in central Indonesia, but there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

The US Geological Survey said the magnitude 6.4 quake hit 233km southeast of Sarangani in the Philippines, at a depth of 12.9km.

The Indonesia Meteorology and Geophysics Agency said Tuesday that the quake, which struck just 22 minutes before midnight (16:38 GMT) on Monday, was centred about 58km southeast of the Talaud islands in North Sulawesi province and had no potential to trigger a tsunami.

It was strongly felt in Melonguane, a town of Talaud, but there were no reports of its impact, the agency said.

Indonesia is prone to earthquakes due to its location on the Pacific "Ring of Fire," an arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin. In December 2004, a massive earthquake off Sumatra island triggered a tsunami that killed 230 000 people in a dozen countries.

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