BEIJING, May 22 (Reuters) – Seven bodies were recovered from a Chinese fishing vessel that capsized in the central Indian Ocean, according to state media on Monday, days after China President Xi Jinping ordered an all-out search to rescue and recover missing crew members.
Several countries, including Australia, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, the Maldives, and the Philippines, joined in rescue efforts for 39 missing crew members after the Chinese distant-water fishing vessel “Lupeng Yuanyu 028” capsized early last Tuesday, state-run CCTV reported.
The vessel is owned by Penglai Jinglu Fishery Co Ltd based in Shandong province. The company has yet to release a statement on the incident.
Of the 39 people that were originally on board – 17 Chinese crew members, 17 Indonesians and five from the Philippines – it was not immediately clear which crew members were found.
Sri Lankan divers found and recovered the remains in the cabin of the ship, CCTV reported according to the Chinese Ministry of Transport.
Indian Navy Locates Capsized Chinese Fishing Vessel, Life Raft in Indian Ocean
The wrecked vessel continues to slowly drift eastward, CCTV said.
According to state media, 13 ships are still in the vicinity of where the boat sank.
CCTV footage last week showed high-powered marine radar on ships that were trying to locate the capsized vessel, while crew members were seen using visual equipment to pan sea waters to locate survivors.
Last Thursday, the Chinese foreign ministry said President Xi instructed that additional rescue forces be sent and that international maritime search assistance be coordinated.
China’s ambassador to Australia urged Canberra on Thursday to step up its rescue efforts to help locate the missing.
(Reporting by Bernard Orr and Beijing, Shanghai newsrooms; Editing by Bernadette Baum)
(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2023.
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