DUSHANBE, TAJIKISTAN (BNO NEWS) -- A moderate earthquake shook a number of towns in the Tajikistan and Afghanistan border region on early Sunday morning, seismologists said, but there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.
The 5.7-magnitude earthquake at 4:28 a.m. local time (2328 GMT Saturday) was centered about 7 kilometers (4.3 miles) southwest of Obikhingou, a small town in a region known as the Districts of Republican Subordination. It struck about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) deep, making it a shallow earthquake, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).
Seismologists said strong shaking was likely felt in towns near the epicenter, and some shaking may have been felt across the border in northern Afghanistan. Several residents in the capital Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan which is some 140 kilometers (86 miles) west of the epicenter, reported feeling light shaking.
There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties from the region.
Moderate and strong earthquakes in Tajikistan are relatively rare. The worst earthquake on record in the region happened in October 1907 when a powerful 7.4-magnitude earthquake struck the Tajikistan-Uzbekistan border, killing at least 12,000 people. It was followed by another 7.4-magnitude earthquake in Tajikistan's Rushon District in February 1911, killing at least 90 people.
Most recently, a relatively light earthquake struck the Khatlon region in southern Tajikistan in July 2006, killing three people and leaving 19 others injured. The earthquake destroyed some 320 buildings and damaged 1,200 more, leaving more than 1,200 people homeless.
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