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Southwest Japan hit by another powerful quake

Kumamoto residents brace for aftershocks following a tremor Thursday that killed 9 people.

TOKYO -- A magnitude-7.1 earthquake rocked southwestern Japan's Kumamoto Prefecture early Saturday morning after a Thursday quake left nine dead.

     The earthquake occurred around 1:25 a.m. at a depth of 10km, registering an upper 6 on the Japanese seismic scale. Tsunami advisories were issued for surrounding areas, but have since been lifted.

     The quake is thought to have occurred on a neighboring fault to that which generated a magnitude-6.5 tremor Thursday night. Kumamoto Prefecture on Friday reported 1,006 injured in building collapses and other events. Some 53 were severely hurt, while nine were killed.

     The Japan Meteorological Agency warns of aftershocks of 6 or more on the Japanese scale in the coming days. Poor weather Saturday could increase the chance of landslides and other secondary disasters in areas where the ground has been loosened by the tremors, the agency said.

(Nikkei)

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