300 Vietnamese fishermen rescued after record China typhoon
Sunday, May 21, 2006
Survivors were found on 22 Vietnamese ships near the Pratas Islands, off the southern coast of Guangdong province. State television reported the rescue as the "largest international marine rescue operation ever mounted by China."
Eight fishing ships sank 1,000 km east of Vietnam's central city of Danang, while eight remained missing. Rescuers had found 26 bodies and rescued 81 others, the Vietnamese government said in a statement. "However, the number of missing fishermen and the ships remains huge," Prime Minister Phan Van Khai said on state-run Vietnam Television.
On the Da Nang coast, relatives of the missing fishermen erected altars with flowers and fruits. Weeping families burnt incense and prayed for loved ones to return.
Typhoon Chanchu was downgraded to a tropical storm on Thursday when it crossed the southern Chinese coast. The storm caused landslides, flooding and forced around a million people to evacuate. Landslides and collapsing buildings killed 15 people and left four missing in China's Fujian province. Eight more people died in neighboring Guangdong province. Flooding in southern Taiwan swept two women to their deaths.
Chanchu, the most powerful on record to enter the South China Sea in May, left a wake of damage in the region - killing at least 37 people in the Philippines last weekend.
The typhoon, with winds of up to 170 km per hour, has reportedly killed 23 people in China. Vietnam's Fisheries Ministry had listed more than 400 fishermen as missing from Danang city and the nearby provinces of Quang Nam and Quang Ngai.
- "China rescues 300 Vietnamese fishermen after typhoon" — , May 21, 2006
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- "Chanchu leaves nearly 90 dead in Asia" — , May 21, 2006