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Strong earthquake rocks Myanmar and India

A 6.9-magnitude earthquake has struck Myanmar, with tremors felt in parts of eastern India and Bangladesh. There were no immediate reports of casualties or widespread damage due to the quake.

A strong earthquake

rattled Myanmar on Wednesday night, sending residents fleeing from their homes in the wake of strong tremors.

"We haven't heard any reports of casualties or damage," said an official from Myanmar's meteorological department based in the capital Naypyitaw. "So far as I know, the epicenter wasn't in a densely populated area."

The quake was centered in the sparsely-populated jungle and hills around 220 kilometers (137 miles) northwest of Mandalay, Myanmar's second-biggest city.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) estimated the quake's depth at 135 kilometers.

According to local officials, there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage, although many of Myanmar's outlying provinces have

poor communications infrastructure.

One lawmaker located around 100 kilometers out from the epicenter told news agency AFP the rough tremors lasted for several minutes.

"There may be some destruction and damage. But it's difficult to know the [extent] of destruction at night time," Cho Cho Win said.

"I was sleeping on my bed when suddenly I felt the ground shaking. The first time it was intense, but the second time it was lighter," Aung Thu, 25, told the Associated Press in Yangon, Myanmar.

Along with Bangladesh, the tremors were also felt in the eastern Indian states of Assam and West Bengal, including the area where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are currently visiting during their royal tour of India.

"We felt the tremor very strongly, but all is fine," said British Deputy High Commissioner Scott Furssedonn-Wood, who was staying in the same jungle resort as the royal couple.

Electricity was cut off in parts of northeastern India as thermal power stations were shut down as a precautionary measure.

Wednesday's earthquake comes just days after another powerful quake

rocked South Asia

, killing six in Pakistan.

rs/kms (AP, dpa, Reuters)

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