Algerian capital hit by 5.5 quake

Algiers - A magnitude 5.5 earthquake hit southeast of the Algerian capital on Friday, shaking building and sending panicked families rushing in the streets in Algiers and nearby towns, witnesses and officials said.

The United States Geological Survey said quake struck 14km southeast of Algiers with an epicentre was recorded at a relatively shallow depth of 10km.

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries, according to Algerian state television.

In 2003, Algeria's strongest earthquake in years - measuring 6.7 - struck the capital and surrounding areas killing at least 2 000 people and crumbling buildings in nearby towns of Bourmerdes and Rouiba.