Two dead after fishing vessel capsizes in Indian Ocean

A foreign cargo ship with 21 crew members on board has been towed to safety in the Pearl River estuary by a Chinese professional rescue ship after it broke down off the Nansha Islands in the South China Sea on March 3, 2023. (PHOTO / XINHUA)

BEIJING — Two people were confirmed dead after a Chinese deep-sea fishing vessel capsized in the central Indian Ocean on Tuesday, China's Ministry of Transport said on Thursday.

As of 2 pm Thursday, 10 vessels, including three Chinese navy ships and one foreign ship, are carrying out on-site search and rescue work, and more ships will arrive, according to the ministry.

The capsized vessel, Lupeng Yuanyu 028, had 39 people on board, which include 17 Chinese mariners, 17 Indonesian mariners and five Philippine mariners. The incident occurred at approximately 3 am Tuesday. 

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Search for the missing persons is still underway. Rescuers have reported spotting some objects such as bags and plastic containers floating on the sea, according to the ministry.

The ministry urged all-out efforts in the search for the missing people and pledged to send more search and rescue forces to the scene.