A 6.1-magnitude earthquake shook the coast of East Timor on Friday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, although no immediate damage was reported.
A tsunami alert group said the quake could “create a tsunami affecting the Indian Ocean region”.
The USGS said the quake struck at a depth of 51.4 kilometers (32 miles) off the eastern tip of the island of Timur, which divides East Timor and Indonesia.
The Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS) has issued a tsunami alert for the region.
An AFP reporter in the East Timor capital, Delhi, felt the quake, but said it was “very fast”.
“People have gone about their business as usual,” the journalist said.
East Timor and Indonesia sit in the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, a magnitude earthquake that extends across Southeast Asia and the Pacific Basin.
In February, a magnitude 7.2 earthquake shook North Sumatra, Indonesia, killing at least a dozen people.
In 2004, a 9.1-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Sumatra and triggered a tsunami that killed 220,000 people across the region, including about 170,000 in Indonesia.
East Timor has a population of 1.3 million and is the youngest country in Southeast Asia, recently celebrating the 20th anniversary of its independence from Indonesia.
The economy of most rural countries has been badly affected by the Kovid-19 epidemic, with the World Bank saying 42 percent of the population lives below the poverty line.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published from a syndicated feed.)