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Moderate earthquake rattles Taiwan

world Updated: Dec 23, 2008 08:38 IST

AP
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Taiwanese authorities say a moderate earthquake has struck the southern part of the island. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

The Central Weather says the 5.6 magnitude quake struck at 8:04 a.m. (GMT 0004) on Tuesday in rural Kaohsiung county, about 28 miles (45 kilometers) southeast of the city of Tainan.

The United States Geological Survey puts the quake's strength at 5.4.

Earthquakes frequently rattle Taiwan, but most are minor and cause little or no damage.

However, a 7.6-magnitude earthquake in central Taiwan in 1999 killed more than 2,300 people, and in December 2006 a 6.7-magnitude tremor south of Kaohsiung severed undersea cables and disrupted telephone and Internet service to millions of users throughout Asia.

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