Magnitude 6.3 earthquake strikes Colombia, one dead

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A strong earthquake of 6.3 magnitude struck the Colombian capital Bogota on Thursday, according to the US Geological Survey, prompting frightened residents to flee into the street and leading a woman to fall to her death.

This was followed by a 5.9-magnitude aftershock minutes later as residents crowded in the streets.

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“It was strong, and lasted a long time, said Adrian Alarcon, 43, who works near the capital’s busy Park 93 district. “All my coworkers stood up and we looked at each other like ‘what do we do?’”

“It makes me feel fragile,” he added. “Life changes you in a second. You can’t do anything, just run for your life.”

Colombia’s civil defense agency noted residents had been evacuated in the entire municipality of Calvario, in Meta, southeast of the high-altitude capital. Windows in the area were damaged by the quakes.

In nearby Villavicencio, the agency reported a landslide and said its staff was checking for more impacts.

According to the CGS, the earthquake struck at 12:04 pm (1704 GMT), with its epicenter in the town of El Calvario in the center of the country, 40 kilometers south-east of Bogota.

Buildings shook and sirens sounded as thousands of panicked residents poured into the streets of the capital, gripping their cellphones as they called loved ones, according to AFP journalists.

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