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Saturday, 5 August, 2000, 14:13 GMT 15:13 UK
Earthquake strikes Sakhalin
Sakhalin map
A powerful earthquake has struck Sakhalin island on Russia's far eastern coast setting off a mudslide.

Reports say the earthquake, which struck at 0800 local time (2100 GMT) measured six points on the Richter scale.

There have been no reports of injuries but Russian state television reported that a small power station had been damaged and communications disrupted.

Many residents are said to be out in the streets or seeking shelter in nearby hills.

"People are staying outside holding their children and documents in fear that their houses might collapse," the Russian independent television station, NTV, said in a bulletin.

A regional headquarters to deal with the aftermath of the earthquake has been set up.

Floods

Russia's far east has been hit this week by devastating floods, caused by rivers that burst their banks, leaving residents in some areas stranded on the roofs of their dwellings.

Thousands of homes are reported to have been inundated and hundreds of families evacuated.

Roads and bridges have been washed out and several power stations damaged.

Five years ago, nearly 2,000 people died when an earthquake struck the town of Neftegorsk, on the remote island which is located off Russia's Pacific coast.

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See also:

30 Mar 00 | Sci/Tech
The Earth's Ring of Fire
07 Jun 00 | Asia-Pacific
Fears over quake island
16 Jun 00 | Americas
Chile quake increases suffering
17 May 00 | Asia-Pacific
Quake hits Taiwan
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