Two aftershocks rattle Indon town

QUAKE DAMAGE: Christian residents attending service Sunday in front of their damaged church after an earthquake in the town of Nabire in Papua. - Reuterspic

JAKARTA: Two major aftershocks yesterday rattled the eastern Indonesian town of Nabire, which is facing a mammoth rebuilding effort after earthquakes killed at least 31 people and caused widespread destruction. 

The first aftershock in the morning measured 5.3 on the Richter scale while the magnitude of the second was not immediately known but appeared higher, said Fauzi, head of the National Seismology Centre. 

“Residents said the tremor in the afternoon was stronger than in the morning,” Fauzi said, adding that there were no reports of casualties from the aftershocks.        

A resident said the afternoon temblor sent people scrambling out of their homes. 

“Power was up and we were starting to return to our houses but suddenly there was this strong aftershock and we ran out in panic,” Tornado told Elshinta radio.  

A quake measuring 6.9 on the Richter scale – thought to be the largest quake measured in the region since 2000 – struck the town in northwestern Papua province on Friday. 

At least 33 aftershocks have been recorded since then, including one measuring 6.2 on the Richter scale on Saturday, the official said. – AFP  

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