In the early morning (local time) of Monday, December 24, a 5.8-magnitude earthquake hit the Xaitongmoin county (Tibetan Plateau; Tibet autonomous region), 300 km (178 mi) east of Lhasa. Over 2,000 people have been evacuated from the county. No casualties have been reported. Local traffic and telecommunications have not been impacted. Aftershocks - potentially more devastating than the initial quake - are possible in the coming hours and days.
The Tibetan Plateau is a region where intense tectonic deformation and high earthquake activity are reported. 18 earthquakes reaching over 8 magnitude, as well as 100 earthquakes reaching between 7-7.9 magnitude have been reported over the years.
Individuals present in the affected area are advised to avoid impacted areas and follow all instructions issued by authorities. On a separate note, foreign nationals need a permit to travel to the Tibet Autonomous Region. Applications for Tibet Entry Permits can only be made through specialized travel agents based in China and travel can only be undertaken via organized tours.
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