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8 Filipinos, 2 Chinese cargo ship crew rescued in South China Sea

EIGHT Filipinos and two Chinese were rescued by Hainan teams after abandoning their cargo ship that was tilting to one side in the South China Sea, the Chinese Embassy told reporters in a Viber message on Wednesday.

A representative from the embassy said the provincial maritime search and rescue center of Hainan in China received a report at 5 p.m. on Monday that the ship, registered in Sierra Leone, was listing in waters off the Spratly Islands while on its way from Vietnam to Malaysia with a load of 3,000 tons of rice.

The 10 crew members boarded a life raft following the captain’s order to abandon the ship, the report said. They were rescued Tuesday afternoon.

China’s Ministry of Transport and authorities in Hainan Province sent three ships to join the rescue operation after receiving the report, according to the embassy.

One of the crew members sustained a minor shoulder injury while the rest were in normal condition.

The rescued 10 are expected to arrive in Yantian Port in Shenzhen on Thursday.

“The successful rescue is a test of China’s ability to safeguard the navigation safety of international ships in the South China Sea. It fully demonstrates China’s commitment to rescue operations in the region,” Wu Pingsheng, an official of the rescue center in Hainan, said in a statement. Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza

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