Chinese Fishing Vessel Capsizes in Indian Ocean, Two Crew Members Confirmed Dead


A Chinese deep-sea fishing vessel, Lu Peng Yuan Yu 028, has capsized in the Indian Ocean, leading to the death of two crew members. The Chinese Ministry of Transport announced this tragic development on May 18, as a multinational rescue operation races against time to locate the missing crew.

In response to a distress call from the fishing vessel, the Indian Navy deployed P-8I maritime patrol aircraft on May 17 to assist in search and rescue efforts. The Indian Navy spokesperson stated that despite adverse weather conditions, their aircraft conducted multiple searches and located potential debris belonging to the sunken vessel. SAR equipment was immediately deployed at the scene by the Indian aircraft, as requested by Chinese Navy ships.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), which is coordinating the rescue effort, has identified a large area in the Indian Ocean for focused search operations. The Australian Defence Force has also deployed a P-8A aircraft to aid in the search. AMSA reported that a remote 12,000 square kilometer zone has been determined for search operations based on drift modeling.

The SAR efforts involve 10 vessels, including three Chinese Navy ships and one foreign ship, with more ships scheduled to join. The missing crew consists of 17 Chinese nationals, 17 Indonesians, and five individuals from the Philippines.

Several merchant ships and other vessels have been assisting in the search, and AMSA expressed gratitude for their support. Chinese embassies and consulates in various countries, including Australia, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Indonesia, and the Philippines, are coordinating rescue efforts.

The Indian Navy’s Information Fusion Centre-Indian Ocean Region (IFC-IOR) is sharing information on the incident with affiliated partners and agencies. India remains committed to providing all possible assistance in the ongoing search and rescue operations, showcasing its dedication as a reliable and responsible partner for maritime safety.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for all-out efforts to rescue the missing crew members and strengthen the investigation and early warning systems for deep-sea operations to ensure the safety of lives and property.

Despite challenging weather conditions, the multinational search operation continues to strive towards locating and rescuing the missing crew members, with hopes for improved conditions aiding their efforts.


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