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Debris removal

Soldiers remove debris from a partly collapsed municipal building after an earthquake in Juchitan, Oaxaca state, Mexico. (AP/REX/Shutterstock)

Mexico's strongest earthquake in a century leaves dozens dead and thousands without power

Georgie Darling
Georgie Darling

An earthquake with a suspected magnitude of 8.1 has struck Southern Mexico, with dozens dead so far and many injured.

According to the US Geological Survey, the epicentre was in the Pacific, about 87km (54 miles) south-west of the town of Pijijiapan and reached depths of 70km.

Buildings swayed in Mexico City as scores of people were forced to flee their homes in the middle of the night.

Now, with suspected three-metre-high waves, a tsunami warning has been issued to Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras.

Schools have been closed in Mexico City and Chiapas in preparation, and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto tweeted that he was in contact with the country’s centre for disaster prevention.

The last earthquake of this size in Mexico struck in 1985. It hit Mexico City and killed thousands.

The Mexican interior ministry has given the latest quake a higher magnitude, of 8.4, which would be the highest the country has ever recorded.

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