Eight dead, including six Chinese nationals, after ship sinks near Japan
Eight crewmen, including six Chinese nationals, have died after Hong Kong-registered cargo ship “Jintian” sank off southwestern Japan, while rescuers are still searching for the nine missing crewmen, authorities confirmed Thursday.
According to Lu Guijun, Chinese Consul General in Fukuoka, rescuers have found 13 crewmen as on Thursday noon. Yet, six Chinese and two Burmese crewmen were pronounced dead.
“Eight have been confirmed dead, of whom six are Chinese,” Lu told China Global Television Network (CGTN).
“Five of them – including four Chinese crew members – are not in life-threatening conditions,” he added.
Rescuers are searching for the nine crewmen who are still missing, Lu also said.
“We express our deepest condolences to the unfortunate victims.”
There were 14 Chinese crewmen and eight Burmese crewmen onboard.
CGTN reported that Chinese Ambassador to Japan Kong Xuanyou has commissioned a task force from the Chinese Consulate General in Fukuoka to visit rescued crewmen and help identify the diseased.
The ship sent a distress signal on Tuesday evening from a position around 110 kilometers (68 miles) west of the remote and uninhabited Danjo Islands in far southwestern Japan.
Multiple vessels and aircraft from Japan's coast guard and military, as well as the South Korean coast guard and private ships, have been involved in the search operation and retrieved 13 crewmen.