Tue, May 09, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take: Help sought in rescuing boat

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has instructed the nation's representative offices in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia to seek assistance from the navies of the two countries in rescuing a Taiwanese fishing boat which went missing on Saturday, a spokesman said yesterday. The Trade Mission of the Republic of China in Papua New Guinea and the Taipei Economic and Trade Office in Jakarta would ask naval authorities in the two countries to help rescue the Shun-Cheng, a fishing boat based out of Tungkang port in Pingtung, the spokesman said. The 72-tonne vessel, which mainly fishes for tuna and sharks, was last spotted in Papua New Guinean waters on Saturday. The boat's owner immediately reported the loss of communications contact to the foreign ministry and the Fisheries Administration, fearing that the boat had been hijacked, according to the spokesman. The spokesman said the status of the 15 crew members -- two Taiwanese and 13 Indonesians -- remains unclear. The spokesman added that although contact had been lost, the vessel was still heading north toward Indonesian waters.

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