QUAKES HIT MALAWI, TANZANIA

BLANTYRE and DAR ES SALAAM - Two strong earthquakes hit northern Malawi and southwestern Tanzania early yesterday, the US Geological Survey reported, with initial reports indicating no serious damage or injuries.

BLANTYRE and DAR ES SALAAM - Two strong earthquakes hit northern Malawi and southwestern Tanzania early yesterday, the US Geological Survey reported, with initial reports indicating no serious damage or injuries.

The 6,2 magnitude Tanzanian quake hit 135km south of the town of Mbeya, at a depth of 10km.

"At 2.23am in the morning, there was an earthquake but up to this point we have no reports of any damages or injuries," said Mbeya regional police commander Advocate Nyombi.

In neighbouring Malawi, which has been struck by a series of quakes earlier this month, a 6,0magnitude quake hit the northern region at 1.19am.

The quake, 15,2km deep, followed a series of tremors in the same uranium-rich Karonga district.

Last week a quake killed a one-year-old and injured two people.

Some 3000 Malawians continue to live in makeshift shelters following structural damage to their homes. The government earlier this week asked for help from the public to help cater for the displaced by providing food, blankets and tents.

Output at Kayelekera uranium mine, owned by Australian Paladin Energy, was not affected by the quakes and production continued as normal.

"There has not been any impact at all. The mine is designed to withstand earth movements greater than what is the current range," Neville Huxman, a Paladin spokesperson said.

In 1989 a 6,6 magnitude earthquake killed at least nine people and injured 100 in central Malawi and made 50000 homeless, according to the USGS. - Reuters

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