DEATH TOLL RISES TO 63 IN INDONESIAN SHIPWRECK, 15 STILL MISSING

JAKARTA — Rescuers have recovered 63 bodies and kept searching for 15 missing people whose chance of survival was slim five days after a boat sank in eastern Indonesia, officials said on Thursday.

The search and rescue operation was intensified and expanded Thursday, head of National Disaster Management Agency in Wajo district of South Sulawesi Alamsyah said.

“Today the operation is maximized, hence it has discovered 103 victims with 40 of them alive and 63 others dead. So there are 15 more people to be searched for,” Alamsyah told Xinhua from Wajo district.

“The opportunity to find the victims alive still exists, but it is too small,” Zainul Tjahar, spokesman of the national search and rescue office said.

The search operation is carried out through waters and air, involving planes, helicopters, ships and boats.

KM Marina Baru 02B was en route from Kolaka in southeast Sulawesi to Siwa seaport in South Sulawesi. The boat with 108 passengers and 10 crew members aboard sank near the Gulf of Bone after being hit by a storm on Saturday. PNA/Xinhua/northboundasia.com