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Powerful quake hits near Taiwan's second city

world Updated: Feb 27, 2012 09:02 IST

A shallow 5.9-magnitude earthquake hit near Taiwan's second city of Kaohsiung on Sunday, US seismologists said.

The quake struck 57 kilometres east of the city at 10.34am (0234 GMT) at a depth of just four kilometres, the US Geological Survey said.

The Hong Kong Observatory measured the quake at magnitude 6.0.

Taiwan is regularly hit by earthquakes as the island lies near the junction of two tectonic plates.

In September 1999, a 7.6-magnitude tremor killed around 2,400 people in the deadliest natural disaster in the island's recent history.