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Strong quake rattles Tokyo area, no damage or injury reports

TOKYO (AP) — A strong earthquake rattled the Japanese capital of Tokyo and its suburbs Monday, with a preliminary magnitude reading of 5.6, shaking buildings and temporarily stopping trains.

There were no immediate reports of damages or casualties from the quake, which struck at 2:28 p.m. (0528 GMT). The Japanese Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning as a cautionary measure, but removed it within minutes.

The quake was centered in the northern part of Saitama Prefecture, a state northwest of Tokyo, and 50 kilometers (31 miles) below ground level, the agency said.

The quake shook all 23 wards of Tokyo, as well as the surrounding prefectures including Ibaraki, Tochigi, Saitama and Gunma.

Tokyo Electric Power Co., the utility running Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, which went into multiple meltdowns after the March 2011 massive tsunami, said there were no new abnormalities observed there, or at its other plants. There were also no abruptions to the electric supply, TEPCO said.

Narita international airport closed its runways for inspection but resumed operations after about 10 minutes when no problems were found, airport spokesman Satoshi Morishima said. Some train services in the area also stopped for about 10 minutes.

Japan is one of the most earthquake-prone nations in the world. A magnitude 5 quake can cause considerable damage, while a magnitude 6 temblor can cause severe damage.

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