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(LEAD) Magnitude-5.1 earthquake jolts southeastern S. Korea: meteorological agency

All Headlines 20:47 September 12, 2016

(ATTN: UPDATES headline, lead, throughout with details)

SEOUL, Sept. 12 (Yonhap) -- An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.1 jolted the country's southwestern region, South Korea's meteorological agency said Monday.

Busan Regional Meteorological Administration pinpointed the epicenter of the quake at 9 kilometers south of Gyeongju, some 371 kilometers southeast of Seoul. The quake detected at 7:44 p.m. was felt throughout Gyeongsang Province.

The administration said there was a very strong aftershock measuring magnitude 5.8 that rocked the same region around 8:35 p.m. This second quake was felt even in Seoul.

No damage was immediately reported, including at the Wolsong, Hanul and Gori nuclear power plants located in the Gyeongsang region.

Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co. said all nuclear reactors in the country were not affected and producing electricity.

Most people in the region felt homes and buildings shake, with residents living in an 80-story highrise in Busan saying they felt the building shudder.

The Ministry of Public Safety and Security said no damage has been filed so far, although there was a spike in people calling authorities to find out about the quake. It said some people scared by the tremor evacuated buildings.

Authorities also said some KTX bullet trains halted operations, while South Korea's most-used mobile messenger KakaoTalk went offline shortly after the quake in Gyeongju.

colin@yna.co.kr
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