Quakes Leave Up to 5,000 Homeless in Papua New Guinea

Three powerful earthquakes in northeast Papua New Guinea last week may have destroyed the homes of up to 5,000 people living on remote islands, media reported Tuesday. Traditional huts collapsed in the quakes or were washed away by a tidal surge, the national daily Post-Courier newspaper reported. The newspaper said that a tidal wave up to 2Ѕ yards high struck some regions. On Thursday, two quakes with magnitudes of 8 and 7.7 hit 460 miles northeast of the capital, Port Moresby. A 6.8-magnitude quake struck the same area Saturday. At least one person, a 12-year-old boy, was killed, the Papua New Guinea government said. About 70 houses were destroyed and then washed away by a tsunami, said Simon Passingani, acting provincial administrator in New Ireland province. He said tents and water containers were being sent to the area. But the Post-Courier estimated as many as 5,000 people were homeless. The areas affected are remote and have no telephones so the reports could not immediately be confirmed, Associated Press reports.

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