West News Wire: A hilly area in the southeast of the Philippines was shaken by a strong, shallow earthquake on Wednesday, but there were no initial indications of significant damage or injuries, according to officials.

According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, the 6.1 magnitude earthquake, which was caused by a nearby fault, struck about 14 kilometers (8.7 miles) northeast of New Bataan town in the coastal province of Davao de Oro at a depth of 11 kilometers (6.8 miles).

The government institute reported that the earthquake shook several southern cities and provinces and added that it anticipated aftershocks.

Davao de Oro Gov. Dorothy Gonzaga suspended classes and most government work in the province on Thursday to allow inspections of buildings for possible damage. The province of more than 700,000 people lies in a region that was still reeling from heavy rains and flooding last week.

The Philippines lies along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” an arc of faults around the Pacific Ocean where most of the world’s earthquakes occur. It is also hit by about 20 typhoons and tropical storms each year, making it one of the world’s most disaster-prone countries.

A magnitude 7.7 quake killed nearly 2,000 people in the northern Philippines in 1990.

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