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Madagascar shipwreck death toll rises to 85

By Guardian Nigeria
23 December 2021   |   8:32 am
A shipwreck off the coast of Madagascar this week has claimed 85 lives, maritime officials said Thursday, after retrieving 21 more bodies a day earlier. Maritime authorities said 138 people were on the 12-metre-long (39-feet) vessel, which sank on Monday, adding that only 50 had been rescued. The dead include five children. The wooden vessel,…

This video grab from an AFPTV video taken on December 21, 2021 shows General Serge Gelle (C), Secretary of State for police, transported on an emergency bed surrounded by soldiers on the runway to the plane in Antananarivo. – A Madagascan minister was one of two survivors to have swum some 12 hours to shore December 21, 2021 after their helicopter crashed off the island’s northeastern coast, authorities said. A search was still ongoing for two other passengers after the crash on December 20, 2021 whose cause was not immediately clear, police and port authorities said. Serge Gelle, the country’s secretary of state for police, and a fellow policeman reached land in the seaside town of Mahambo separately on Tuesday morning, apparently after ejecting themselves from the aircraft, port authority chief Jean-Edmond Randrianantenaina said. The helicopter was flying him and the others to inspect the site of a shipwreck off the northeastern coast on December 20, 2021. (Photo by Gaelle BORGIA / AFPTV / AFP)

A shipwreck off the coast of Madagascar this week has claimed 85 lives, maritime officials said Thursday, after retrieving 21 more bodies a day earlier.

Maritime authorities said 138 people were on the 12-metre-long (39-feet) vessel, which sank on Monday, adding that only 50 had been rescued.

The dead include five children.

The wooden vessel, a cargo boat not authorised to carry passengers, had set off from the village of Antseraka for Soanierana-Ivongo, about 100 kilometres (60 miles) to the south.

Initial investigations suggested the vessel’s engine had a “technical problem”, according to Adrien Fabrice Ratsimbazafy of the River and Maritime Port Agency (APMF).

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