One dead as strong earthquake hits Japan

Smoke rises from a house blaze in Takatsuki, Osaka, following an earthquake Monday, June 18, 2018.

Tokyo: A nine-year-old girl was killed and one other person feared dead after a strong quake rocked Japan’s second city of Osaka during Monday’s morning rush hour.

There were no immediate reports of major damage and no tsunami warning was issued after the powerful quake, which stranded commuters and left tens of thousands without power.

Local police said a girl, aged nine, had died in the city of Takatsuki, north of Osaka city.

Media reported she had been trapped when a wall collapsed on her at school following the 5.3-magnitude quake.

Public broadcaster NHK said an 80-year-old man had been killed, also by a collapsing wall.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters the government was “working united, with its first priority on saving people’s lives.”

Abe said he had instructed his staff to “swiftly collect information on damage, make utmost efforts in rescuing and saving lives… (and) provide timely and appropriate information to the public.


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