Tsunami alert called off for South Pacific region

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has cancelled the tsunami warning it issued after three powerful earthquakes struck the South Pacific near the Vanuatu archipelago Thursday morning.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has cancelled the tsunami warning it issued after three powerful earthquakes struck the South Pacific near the Vanuatu archipelago Thursday morning.

The centre said sea-level readings indicated that only a tiny tsunami was generated after the quakes, and no others materialized.

An earthquake with a magnitude of at least 7.8 struck 294 kilometres northwest of the Vanuatu island of Santo. Two other quakes followed.

The warning was issued for 11 Pacific nations and territories, including Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Nauru, Fiji and Kiribati.

So far, there have been no reports of injuries or damage.

The latest warning came just 10 days after a tsunami, triggered by a powerful earthquake in the South Pacific, swept ashore in Samoa, American Samoa and Tonga. That tsunami flattened villages and swept cars and people out to sea, killing at least 178.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Geological Survey reported a strong earthquake struck south of the Philippines on Thursday morning local time.

The quake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.7 and was located in the Celebes Sea, 282 kilometres southeast of Jolo, Sulu Archipelago. No damage or injuries have been reported.

With files from The Associated Press