Strong earthquakes shake part of Indonesia’s West Papua


A series of strong inland earthquakes shook Indonesia’s easternmost province Saturday, but there were no immediate reports of serious damage or casualties.

The Indonesian Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency said at least four land-based earthquakes between 6.2 and 5.5 magnitude were centered about 37 kilometers (23 miles) northwest of Central Mamberamo district of West Papua province at a depth up to 16 kilometers (10 miles).

Those earthquakes posed no danger of triggering a tsunami, said Daryono, who heads the Earthquake and Tsunami Mitigation Division. He said the earthquakes were triggered by a thrust in the Memberamo Anjak fault.

“There is no report on the impact of damage,” said Daryono, who goes by a single name.

The U.S. Geological Survey measured the quakes between 6.1 and 5.9 magnitude at a depth of 19 to 33 kilometers (11.8 to 20.5 miles). Variations in early measurements are common.

With a population of around 1.2 million, West Papua is one of Indonesia’s least-populous provinces.

Indonesia is a seismically active archipelago of 270 million people that is frequently struck by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis.

In February, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake killed at least 25 people and injured more than 460 in West Sumatra province. In January 2021, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake killed more than 100 people and injured nearly 6,500 in West Sulawesi province.

A massive quake off the coast of Aceh in 2004 triggered a powerful tsunami that killed around 230,000 people in a dozen countries.

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