• Pinoys in Japan safe after strong quake

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    NO Filipino was affected in a powerful earthquake off northeastern Japan near Fukushima prefecture on Tuesday morning, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.

    In a text message, Foreign Assistant Secretary and spokesman Charles Jose said Filipinos in Japan remain safe and the Philippine Embassy there continues to monitor the situation.

    “So far, there are no reports of any Filipino affected by the earthquake in Japan,” he added.

    Citing Philippine Ambassador to Japan Manuel Lopez, the spokesman said the Filipino who was earlier reported to be trapped under an automobile is unharmed and now safe.

    There are about 378,000 Filipinos working and living in Japan.

    The department has no estimate for Fukushima alone.

    The Japan Meteorological Agency put the quake at 7.4 magnitude, while the United States Geological Survey said it was 6.9 magnitude.

    The earthquake struck at a shallow depth of seven miles shortly before 6 a.m. (local time) in the Pacific off Fukushima.

    More than 100 aftershocks were recorded after the tremor.

    Residents were asked to evacuate and seek higher ground immediately, and some Filipinos may be among them, Jose said.

    In 2011, an earthquake and tsunami struck the same area, claiming over 18,000 human lives and destroying parts of the coastline, including a nuclear power plant whose subsequent meltdown contaminated its surroundings.

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