A MAJOR 5.8 magnitude earthquake has struck near Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, shaking the Caribbean country.
The quake took place at 12.11am on Sunday morning with a depth of 10km.
The quake was centred around 12 miles (20kilometress) west-northwest of Ti Port-de-Paix off Haiti’s north coast.
Haiti is prone to earthquakes as the island sits on major fault lines along the so-called “Ring of Fire”.
This is a horseshoe-shaped belt running around the Pacific Ocean where a large number of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur.
About 90 percent of all earthquakes occur along the Ring of Fire, which is dotted with 75 percent of all the active volcanoes on earth.
Haiti’s Civil Protection agency says injuries have been reported.
The extent of the damage and number of casualties is still unknown.
The Civil Protection agency said: “Our teams from north to south are witnessing a state of panic in some cities.”
Haiti’s president Jovenel Moïse said: “An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.8 has hit Haiti.
“According to the first reports by the Civil Protection, there is damage in the Far North of the Island.
“I am working closely with authorities for an appropriate response.