Jacinda Ardern press conference rocked by 5.2 magnitude earthquake

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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has been shaken mid-press conference by a 5.2 magnitude earthquake.

Tens of thousands of Kiwis reported the 5.9 magnitude earthquake to monitoring website GeoNet on Friday morning.

Ms Ardern was temporarily thrown as she attempted to answer questions on the country's new COVID-19 strategy from Wellington's Beehive.

"Sorry. A slight distraction," she said, looking upwards as a rumble was felt in the Executive Building.

"Would you mind repeating that question?" she asked, before carrying on.

The tremor was centred 30km south-west of Tamaranui, near Mount Ruapehu in the middle of North Island.

Originally estimated at 5.9 magnitude, it was downgraded by GeoNet minutes after the quake.

"Was stationary in the car and it rocked and rolled!" Twitter user Tenille Nicol said from Wellington.

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