China seeks international search and rescue efforts after fishing vessel with 39 people sinks in Indian Ocean

BEIJING: China on Wednesday sought the help of several countries to rescue 39 people who were on board a Chinese fishing vessel that sank in the Indian Ocean, the official media here reported.
Thirty-nine people, including 17 Chinese crew members, 17 Indonesians, and five from the Philippines, were on board the Chinese fishing vessel that capsized in the central part of the Indian Ocean on Tuesday, it said.
So far, none of the missing persons have been found and a search is underway, the report said.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry has contacted relevant departments in Australia, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Indonesia, the Philippines and other countries to join the search and rescue operations, the report said.
Meanwhile, Chinese President Xi Jinping ordered all-out efforts in the rescue of the missing people in the boat tragedy.
Xi gave the instruction following the incident that occurred around 3 am on Tuesday, urging relevant departments to activate the emergency response mechanism immediately.
Xi called for coordinating international maritime search and rescue assistance, and making every effort to carry out rescue, the report said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and relevant embassies abroad should strengthen contact with relevant local parties to coordinate the search and rescue work, Xi said.
He also ordered to strengthen early warning alerts of safety risks for distant-sea operations to ensure the safety of people’s lives and property.
Chinese Premier Li Qiang has also called for maximum efforts to coordinate relative parties to organise the rescue work and reduce casualties, it said.

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