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Eleven fishermen missing after Ghana vessel MV Comforter II capsizes

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The Ghana-owned but Chinese-operated ship sank during a storm south of Ghana’s Takoradi, 220KM from the capital Accra

The Ghana-owned but Chinese-operated ship sank during a storm south of Ghana’s Takoradi, 220KM from the capital Accra

“Ghanaian authorities said on May 9 they had rescued 15 people from a sinking trawler off the country’s coast while at least 11 others were still missing,” including a Chinese national.

The Ghana-owned but Chinese-operated ship known as MV Comforter II sank on Friday during a storm south of Ghana’s second port city Takoradi, 220KM (135 miles) from the capital Accra.

“Official records have it that there were 26 crew members on board… So far, we’ve rescued 15 people and 11 are still missing,” said Paul Bannerman, deputy director at the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development. Those missing are 10 Ghanaians and one Chinese, Mr. Bannerman told AFP.

“They were fishing in a stormy environment,” he said. “An investigation into the incident is under way,” he added, along with search and rescue efforts. The state-owned Ghanaian Times quoted a marine police source saying the fishing vessel capsized.

“The crew was hauling a net which had caught a lot of fish and… there was also a storm and so the weight pulled the vessel the other way and as they tried to get the fish on board it turned, causing the disaster,” the source said.

In Ghana, foreign vessels have to register to the local flag and access the country’s waters on local licences. A 2018 investigation by the Environmental Justice Foundation, a U.K.-based charity, found that 90% of Ghana’s industrial fishing fleet had links to Chinese companies.



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