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7.7 magnitude quake strikes Chile; tsunami warnings issued

AFP | Washington |

A strong Christmas day earthquake rattled Chile on Sunday, registering 7.7 on the Moment Magnitude Scale, according to US seismologists, who warned that tsunamis are possible in some areas.

The US Geological Survey said the quake struck near the southern coast of the quake-prone South American nation at 1422 GMT.

The epicentre of the earthquake was 40 kilometres southwest of the town of Puerto Quellon.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Honolulu, Hawaii, said in a bulletin that "hazardous tsunamic waves are forecast for some coasts." 

The quake had a depth of 15 kilometres according to the PTWC.