2 Apr 2017

South Korean cargo ship vanishes in South Atlantic

7:39 pm on 2 April 2017

A large South Korean cargo ship which had 24 people on board has gone missing in the South Atlantic.

Two Filipino sailors found on a life raft were rescued, AFP reported, citing a Uruguayan navy spokesman.

On Friday, a crew member sent a text saying the 312m-long Stellar Daisy freighter was taking on water.

The Uruguayan navy alerted merchant ships in the area, which began a search. A navy spokesman said they had reported a strong smell of fuel.

The two people rescued had been found by commercial ships aiding the search, Yonhap news agency said.

"A search operation is continuing for the 22 people," a South Korean foreign ministry official told Reuters.

South Korea also requested assistance in the search from Brazil and Uruguay, the official said.

The ship, a Very Large Ore Carrier (VLOC) with a capacity of 260,000 tonnes, was being operated by a South Korean company but was flagged to the Marshall Islands, and had 16 Filipinos and eight South Koreans on board.

It had departed from Brazil, reports said.

-BBC

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs