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Last Updated: Wednesday February 20 2008 13:20 GMT

Earthquake sparked tsunami fears

aerial view of Banda Aceh, 04 December 2007

At least three people have died and 25 left seriously injured after a strong earthquake in Indonesia.

The quake rocked the Aceh province, one of the areas worst hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, when 168,000 people were killed.

There were fears the quake could cause another Tsunami, and alerts were sent out, but were later lifted.

Officials said many buildings had been damaged and people had been evacuated to the mountains.

Local residents said Wednesday's earthquake lasted for almost a minute.

It was felt strongly in the capital, Banda Aceh, where people left their offices when the buildings started shaking.


Experts first said the quake had a magnitude of 6.6, but later upgraded it to 7.3.

Indonesia sits on the Pacific "Ring of Fire", one of the most active areas for earthquakes and volcanic activity in the world.

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