A strong 6.8 magnitude earthquake rocked eastern Indonesia Friday, the United States Geological Survey said, triggering a tsunami warning and sending panicked residents running from their homes.

The quake struck at a relatively shallow depth of 17 kilometres off the east coast of Sulawesi island, the USGS said, where a 7.5-magnitude quake-tsunami around the city of Palu killed more than 4,300 people last year.