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Environment

Greek island Crete rattled by magnitude 5.3 quake

ATHENS: Greek authorities say an earthquake with preliminary magnitude 5.3 has rattled the southern island of Crete, without causing damage or injuries.

The Athens Geodynamic Institute says the undersea quake struck early Wednesday near the islet of Gavdos, off Crete, some 345 kilometers (215 miles) south of the Greek capital.

Shortly later, a weaker undersea quake with preliminary magnitude 4.2 occurred near the island of Milos, north of Crete in the southern Aegean Sea. No damage or injuries were reported.

Earthquakes are frequent in Greece, which lies in one of the world's most seismically active areas, but they rarely cause loss of life. In 1999, a quake near Athens killed 143 people.

 
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