Strong earthquake strikes Aegean Sea; rattles Turkey, Greece

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A strong earthquake struck Turkey's Aegean coast on Friday.

Turkey's Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) put the magnitude of the earthquake at 6.6, while the US Geological Survey said it was 7.0.

The epicentre was some 17 km off the coast of the Izmir province, at a depth of 16 km, AFAD said. The US Geological Survey said the depth was 10 km and that the epicentre was 33.5 km off Turkey's coast.

It struck at around 1150 GMT and was felt along Turkey's Aegean coast and the northwestern Marmara region, media said.

People flooded to the streets in the Turkish coastal city of Izmir after the earthquake, witnesses said. Footage from Turkish state broadcaster TRT Haber showed a collapsed building in central Izmir.

Residents of Samos, an island with a population of about 45,000, were urged to stay away from coastal areas, Eftyhmios Lekkas, head of Greece's organisation for anti-seismic planning, told Greece's Skai TV.

Ali Yerlikaya, the governor of Istanbul, where the quake was also felt, said there were no negative reports. 

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