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Powerful earthquake hits Tonga; tsunami advisory issued


WELLINGTON, New Zealand – A powerful underwater earthquake struck Friday off Tonga in the south Pacific Ocean, prompting authorities to issue a tsunami advisory.

The United States Geological Survey said the magnitude 7.3 quake was centered 211 km (132 mi) east-southeast of Neiafu, Tonga, at a depth of 24.8 km (15 mi). It predicts strong shaking but says the probability of serious damage or casualties is small.

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