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Quake rocks Samoa on tsunami anniversary

A 5.4-magnitude earthquake rocked Samoa on Wednesday in a chilling reminder of nature's power as the Pacific nation marked the first anniversary of a tsunami that killed 143 people.

world Updated: Sep 30, 2010 07:42 IST

A 5.4-magnitude earthquake rocked Samoa on Wednesday in a chilling reminder of nature's power as the Pacific nation marked the first anniversary of a tsunami that killed 143 people.

Government officials said there were no reports of damage from the quake, which the US Geological Survey said hit at 7:49am (1849 GMT) at a depth of 35 kilometres (22 miles), 190 kilometres south-west of the capital Apia.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre did not issue an alert.

The tremor followed dawn services across Samoa for victims of last year's tsunami, the country's worst natural disaster, which also killed 34 people in American Samoa and nine in northern Tonga.

"It brought back memories, I had lots of mates that died in the tsunami," Apai hotelier told the stuff.co.nz website.

Last year's disaster, sparked by three quakes in rapid succession measuring magnitude 7.8 to 8.1, unleashed waves as high as 15 metres (49 feet), flattening villages and resorts.

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