Santiago, November 5: A strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake shook Chile on Monday, rattling buildings in the capital while a big anti-government demonstration was under way.
The quake struck at 6:53 pm (2153 GMT) with its epicenter near the northern town of Illapel, the US Geological Survey said.
A strong and prolonged shaking was felt in the capital.
Chile’s National Seismological Center measured the quake at magnitude 6.1, revising down an earlier estimate of 6.3.
There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.
“There have been no reports of damage to people, disruption of basic services or infrastructure,” the National Emergency Office said.
The Army Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service said the quake was unlikely to cause a tsunami on Chile’s Pacific coast.
When the quake hit, police in Santiago were dispersing protesters at the start of the third week of anti-austerity protests targeting the conservative government. Chile is one of the world’s most earthquake-prone countries.
The 9.5-magnitude 1960 Valdivia earthquake was the strongest ever recorded on the magnitude scale, according to the USGS.
In 2010 an 8.8-magnitude followed by a tsunami killed more than 500 people. Chile lies on the Ring of Fire — an arc of fault lines that circles the Pacific Basin and is prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. (AFP)