DILI: A 6.1-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of East Timor on Friday, the US Geological Survey stated, with tremors felt so far as the Australian metropolis of Darwin, though there have been no rapid stories of harm or casualties. The USGS stated the quake hit at a depth of 51 kilometres (32 miles) off the jap tip of Timor island, which is break up between East Timor and Indonesia. An AFP journalist within the East Timor capital Dili felt the earthquake and stated that, though it lasted solely seconds, “the jolt was fairly robust”. “I noticed folks dashing out of their properties and youngsters operating exterior of the varsity,” the journalist stated. The earthquake was extra violent across the city of Lospalos within the east of the nation, however native authorities have been nonetheless assessing the state of affairs and didn’t give a breakdown of the harm or potential casualties. The quake was additionally felt in Darwin, Australia, which lies throughout the Timor Sea from the epicentre. Darwin resident Joel Willingale, who works in heavy manufacturing, stated “it went on for about 30 seconds”. “The entire room shook and slammed down,” he stated. “We solely actually really feel the results of a quake sometimes, often within the Banda Sea. However this one was an enormous one.” The Banda Sea lies north of Timor island. To the north in Indonesia, the earthquake triggered panic and prompted folks to evacuate buildings within the southwest of the Moluccas archipelago, in response to the Nationwide Emergency Administration. Authorities didn’t report any harm or casualties. The United Nations’ tsunami monitoring company warned that the quake “might generate a tsunami affecting the Indian Ocean area”. No nationwide authority within the area has but issued a tsunami warning, nonetheless. “No #tsunami menace to Australia from #earthquake felt in Darwin, NT,” stated Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology in a tweet. East Timor and Indonesia sit on the Pacific “Ring of Fireplace”, an arc of intense seismic exercise that stretches by way of Southeast Asia and throughout the Pacific basin. In February, a 6.2-magnitude quake killed a dozen folks when it struck Indonesia’s North Sumatra. In 2004, a 9.1-magnitude quake hit the coast of Sumatra and triggered a tsunami that killed 220,000 folks all through the area, together with about 170,000 in Indonesia. East Timor has a inhabitants of about 1.3 million and is Southeast Asia’s youngest nation, just lately celebrating the twentieth anniversary of its independence from Indonesia. The largely rural financial system has been badly hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, with the World Financial institution saying 42 per cent of the inhabitants dwell beneath the poverty line.