David Cameron has pledged Britain's support to Indonesia after a massive earthquake struck the Aceh province during his visit to the south-east Asian country. The Prime Pinister said Britain was ready to help in any way necessary, while speaking at a joint press conference with the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in Jakarta.
Cameron said he was "hugely concerned" by news of the quake.
"Our thoughts should be with those who are affected. Britain of course stands ready to help if help is required. We will stand with you and your government and your people at this time of worry," the Press Association quoted him as saying.
The Prime Minister was on an official visit to the archipelago country to, according to a report in AFP, finalise a $2.5 billion deal between Garuda and Airbus as the European plane maker looks to tap the growing economy. He arrived in the country on Wednesday morning. Fortunately, there were no reports of any quakes or tremors in the capital region.
Meanwhile, Yudhoyono said that there were no serious casualties and local residents were all taken to safety.
"The people of Aceh have been able to go to safe places. The situation is being managed well. We will take all necessary measures," he said, adding, "The situation is under control so far. It is a very different situation from 2004 when Aceh was faced with a deadly tsunami."
Indonesia's Disaster Mitigation Agency has also issued a statement, saying there has been no detection of a low tide that could indicate a tsunami. The earthquake reportedly occurred at a depth of 33km off the coast of Aceh, a province of Indonesia.
Finally, a statement on the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Web site, regarding travel advisories to and from Indonesia, reads: "On 11 April an 8.7 magnitude earthquake struck off the western coast of Northern Sumatra, Indonesia. A tsunami watch has been issued across the Indian Ocean region. The Indonesian authorities have issued a tsunami warning in North Sumatra, West Sumatra, Bengkulu and Lampung. You should monitor media reports and follow advice of the local authorities. British nationals in the region are advised to call home to let family know they are safe."
The latest updates, however, are that all tsunami warnings have been completely lifted.
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