LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) _ A strong earthquake hit a sparsely populated region in the Andes mountains on Wednesday, but there were no immediate reports of injury or damage.

The quake hit at 3:00 a.m. (3:00 a.m. EDT) and had a magnitude of 5.9, according to Angel Vega, assistant director of the Seismological Observatory in San Calixto, Bolivia. Its epicenter was about 500 miles southeast of La Paz, Bolivia's capital.

The quake was at least 125 miles below the surface. Quakes of magnitude 5 and 6 are capable of producing considerable to severe damage, but the depth of the earthquake and remoteness of its location made serious damage doubtful.