13 January, 2007

Japanese Tsunami Warning Downgraded

A powerful magnitude 8.3 earthquake struck off Japan’s northern coast in the Pacific today, sparking tsunami warnings and sending thousands of residents along the archipelago’s eastern coast fleeing to higher ground, officials said.Japan’s Meteorological Agency later downgraded its tsunami warnings to advisories for the highest risk areas.The quake struck at about 1.24pm (5.24am Irish Time) near the Kuril Trench, about 310 miles east of the Etorofu island, the largest of a disputed four-island chain known as the Northern Territories in Japan and the Kuril islands in Russia, the agency said.

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