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Two earthquakes shake Indonesia

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Two powerful earthquakes have struck off the Indonesian island of Sumatra within three hours of each other.

The quakes were measured at 7.3 and 6.9 respectively. A brief tsunami warning issued after the first quake was lifted and there were no reports of damage.

The epicentres of the quakes were close together, about 300km (185 miles) north-west of the city of Bengkulu.

The same area was hit by an earthquake measuring 8.4 last September, which killed at least 25 people.

"People panicked, but there was no big movement towards higher ground, although there was a tsunami warning," a police spokesman in Bengkulu told Reuters.

An earthquake in 2004 with a magnitude of nine caused a tsunami that killed more than 200,000 people.

Indonesia suffers from frequent tremors as it lies in the "Pacific Ring of Fire", an area of intense seismic activity.



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