MANILA, May 3 — A magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck off the island province of Leyte in central Philippines today, with damage and aftershocks expected, its seismology agency said.

The German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) recorded the quake at a magnitude of 5.9 and said the depth was 10km.

There were no immediate reports from Philippine authorities of damage or casualties caused by the offshore quake.

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The archipelago nation is in the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” where volcanic activity and earthquakes are common.

“People panicked and rushed outside the mall,” said Harold Giganto, a police officer in coastal Dulag town in Leyte, who was manning a checkpoint near a shopping mall when the earthquake struck.

Giganto said there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage and the tremor was “quite strong”. — Reuters

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