Aftershock 7.0 earthquake hits New Caledonia coast

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                        <strong>A magnitude 7.0 aftershock has struck off the coast of New Caledonia, hours after the French territory was hit by an earthquake. An initial tsunami threat has now passed, however.</strong>

        The aftershock comes after an earthquake struck 168.2 km (104.5 miles) from the small town of Tadine on the Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia.&nbsp;

Tsunami alerts have been issued for both New Caledonia and nearby Vanuatu, a state in the South Pacific consisting of 80 islets with a population of 270,000 people. Authorities in New Caledonia have called for an “immediate evacuation” of people to designated areas.

New Caledonia sits on the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’ – an arc of seismic faults where earthquakes and volcanic activity regularly occur.

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