China demands more resources from Australia. It took more planes, ships and rescue workers to find the 39 crew members of a Chinese fishing vessel that sank in the Indian Ocean on Tuesday.
The Lu Pengyuan Yu 028, with 17 Chinese, 17 Indonesians and 5 Filipinos on board, capsized at around 3 a.m. Tuesday, Beijing time, capital city (9 p.m. in Paris on Monday), according to state broadcaster CCTV. On Thursday, China News Agency reported that the ongoing search operation “has made it possible to find and recover the bodies of two victims.”
More planes, more ships, more people.
An international search and rescue operation is underway to find 37 other missing persons. Xiaoqian said Australia has already sent three planes and four ships to assist in searches of the sinking area, located 5,000 kilometers west of Perth in southwestern Australia. “We want them to send more planes, ships and more personnel to this region,” he insisted. For its part, China has diverted two commercial ships to participate in search operations, according to CCTV.
A spokesperson for the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said Australia was organizing rescue operations and was keeping in touch with Chinese authorities. Devices, including an Australian military aircraft, have combed an area of 12,000 square kilometers south of where the remains of the boat were discovered, as part of a “multinational” effort. The trawler’s distress beacon has been detected as Hurricane Fabian is producing 7m high waves and winds of 120km/h. The weather continues to make rescue efforts difficult. The Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) in the Australian capital, Canberra, “remains optimistic about a happy outcome, but the passage of time and weather conditions make survival more difficult.”
The vessel was owned by Penglai Jinglu Fishery Co, a Chinese fishing company, and is licensed to fish flying squid and Pacific sardines, according to North Pacific Fisheries Commission data.
The ship left Cape Town, South Africa, on May 5 en route to Busan, South Korea, according to tracking website Marine Traffic, which last located the ship on May 10 to southeast Reunion in the Indian Ocean.