UPDATED: Italy withdraws tsunami warning after Turkey, Syria earthquake

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ROME, Feb 6 (Reuters) – Italian authorities said on Monday they had withdrawn a tsunami warning for the country’s southern coast that was raised after a major earthquake struck central Turkey and northwest Syria, killing hundreds of people.

Italy’s Civil Protection Department had issued a statement recommending people to move away from coastal areas but later reduced the alert and tweeted that it had been withdrawn.

Train traffic in the southern regions of Sicily, Calabria and Apulia had been temporarily halted as a precaution but resumed in the morning, the agency said in the statement.

The 7.9-magnitude earthquake hit central Turkey and northwest Syria in the early darkness of Monday, killing more than 200 people as buildings collapsed across the snowy region.

The alarm level was red and the population was advised to avoid walking or driving along all the coastal areas and coastal roads in the time slot from 6:30 until the issuance of the all-clear message. The alert indicates the possibility of a real danger to people near the coast, especially if in areas not very high, or even lower, than sea level. Even a wave of only 0.5 meters in height – explains the Civil Protection – can generate dangerous floods and very strong currents.

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