Earthquake strikes off coast of Indonesia's Sumatra

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JAKARTA, Nov 23 (Reuters) - An earthquake of magnitude 6.0 struck off the coast of Indonesia's Sumatra island, near Aceh, the country's meteorological agency said today mornning.

The quake struck 113 km southwest of Banda Aceh in Sumatra and was at a depth of 16 km the agency said in a text message.

More than 20 people were killed when an 8.4 magnitude earthquake hit western Sumatra on September 12, and thousands of homes were damaged or destroyed in the area.

The area was subsequently hit by a series of quakes and strong aftershocks, setting off tsunami warnings in Indonesia and other countries in the region.

Indonesia, which is situated in a belt of intense seismic activity known as the ''Pacific Ring of Fire'', was hit by a huge earthquake in December 2004, triggering a devastating tsunami in the Indian Ocean, which killed more than 230,000 people in the region, including 170,000 Indonesians.

REUTERS TB BST0522

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