Strong earthquake shakes northern Japan

A strong earthquake shook northern Japan early Tuesday prompting tsunami warnings from Japan's Meteorological Agency. The temblor, with a preliminary magnitude 7.2, hit at 6:39 a.m. (2139 GMT) and was centered off the east coast of Japan's main island of Honshu, the US Geological Survey said. Japan's Meteorological Agency measured the magnitude at 6.9, it said. There was no immediate word on the discrepancy. A tsunami originally forecast to be 50 centimeters (19.5 inches) high hit the city of Ofunato on the coast of Iwate prefecture, with 30-centimeter (12 inch) waves at 7:26 a.m. (2226 GMT), the agency said.
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