UPDATE 1-New Zealand hit by quake of magnitude 6.9, minor damage

Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:06am EDT

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WELLINGTON, July 21 (Reuters) - An earthquake of magnitude 6.9 struck New Zealand on Sunday, the U.S. Geological Survey's monitoring service reported, but there were no immediate reports of major damage or injuries.

The largest of a series of tremors that have shaken the region in the past few days, the quake knocked items off shelves, shattered some windows and brought trains in the capital, Wellington, to a halt.

"We've had one report of structural damage so far, but as far as I know, power in the city is still on," said a spokesman at the capital's fire station.

The quake's epicentre was in the Cook Strait that separates the country's North and South islands. Domestic media have reported some power outages in the South Island.

The Pacific tsunami warning centre has not issued a tsunami warning. (Reporting by Naomi Tajitsu,; Writing by Clarence Fernandez,; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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