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Powerful earthquake strikes off coast of Indonesia

A powerful and shallow earthquake of magnitude 8.1 struck off the west coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Wednesday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The epicentre was 502 miles southwest of Padang and it was six miles deep, USGS said.

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties but the shallower a quake, the more likely it is to cause damage.

Britons warned to 'maintain vigilance' in Indonesia

Britons in Indonesia have been warned to "maintain vigilance" after terror attacks in the capital Jakarta.

Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond condemned the "utterly senseless acts of terror".

"My thoughts are with the victims and their families," said Mr Hammond.

"We advise British nationals in Jakarta and elsewhere in Indonesia to maintain vigilance and monitor FCO travel advice, local media and to follow the advice of local security authorities."

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Islamic State claims responsibility for Jakarta attacks

Seven people, including five militants, died in the attacks. Credit: Reuters

So-called Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Jakarta attacks, which were "targeting foreign nationals and security forces".

The announcement was made on an IS-allied news agency.

The police chief in the Indonesian capital has also said the group is "definitely" behind the attack.

Lawyer tells ITV News of panic after Jakarta explosion

An eyewitness to the Jakarta attacks has described panic in the streets following the first explosions.

Australian Andrew Gadd, who works in the Indonesia capital, told ITV News he heard a loud bang while in his office and then someone began shouting "bomb, bomb, bomb".

He said when he looked out of a window he saw another explosion and people running in the street.

"You could see people running away and ducking and hiding behind cars," said Mr Gadd.

Indonesian authorities 'expected attack'

ITV News Security Editor Rohit Kachroo tweets:

Jakarta militants 'imitated Paris attacks', say police

Military vehicles on the streets of Jakarta after the attacks. Credit: Reuters

Militants who attacked a busy shopping area in downtown Jakarta were copying the Paris attacks, authorities have said.

Indonesia's national police spokesman also said they probably had connections to so-called Islamic State.

General Anton Charliyan said: "They imitated the terror actions in Paris...they are likely from the (Islamic State) group."

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Police arrest four suspects as Jakarta attack zone secured

An armed officer near the scene of the attacks. Credit: RTV

Indonesian police have arrested four suspected militants following the gun and bomb attacks in the centre of the capital Jakarta.

Five assailants were confirmed dead, along with two other people.

Police declared the area secure shortly before 8am GMT after sweeping through the area.

Jakarta police spokesman Col. Muhammad Iqbal said: "We believe there are no more attackers around Sarinah. We have taken control."

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