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Phuket Gazette World News: Prosecutors extend Korea ferry captain’s detention as death toll mounts

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Phuket Gazette World News: Prosecutors extend Korea ferry captain’s detention as death toll mounts | Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Prosecutors extend Korea ferry captain’s detention as death toll mounts
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: South Korean prosecutors investigating a ferry disaster said on Sunday they would seek to extend the detention of the ship’s captain and two other crew by 10 days as they tried to determine the cause of an accident that may claim more than 300 lives.

The ferry, the Sewol, was on a 400-km (300-mile) voyage from Incheon to the southern holiday island of Jeju in calm weather when it turned, listed sharply and then began to sink early on Wednesday.

The ship was being steered by the third mate, on her first passage helming through the waters, and the captain was not on the bridge at the time.

Out of the 476 passengers and crew, 339 were pupils or teachers from a high school in Ansan, a commuter city outside Seoul.

Divers gained access to the passenger quarters of the sunken vessel overnight for the first time and by midday on Sunday the total of confirmed deaths to had risen to 50, with 252 passengers, most of them children, still missing.

The 20-year old ferry took more than two hours to sink but passengers were ordered to stay put in their cabins. So far, 174 passengers are known to have survived the capsize.

“We are trying to find out if there is additional negligence,” Prosecutor Yang Joong-jin told a news conference in Mokpo, one of the centres for the investigation.

When the crew were arrested on Saturday, they were detained by police for 10 days and prosecutors for a further 10. If the extension is granted, they could be detained for 30 days.

Yang said that prosecutors had also summoned 10 other people to give evidence, including other crew from the Sewol and officials from the ferry’s owner, Chonghaejin Marine Co Ltd.

The death toll mounted steadily on Sunday as more divers gained access to the passenger quarters of the ferry with the help of ropes to guide them through the murky water.

“We are now putting in four guide lines, before there was only one, so their access will become faster,” Ko Myung-suk, a coast guard official, told a news briefing in the rescue centre in the port of Jindo.

A naval sailor also died on Saturday on a boat on the way out to help in the search, a naval official said.

ANGUISH AND FRUSTRATION

Relatives of those still listed as missing, but who are now presumed to be dead, clashed briefly with police when about 100 of them tried to leave the island by a road bridge to the mainland to take their protest to the capital city of Seoul.

Police blocked them and they later turned back.

“Bring me the body,” weeping mother Bae Sun-ok said of her child as she was comforted by two policemen at the bridge.

More than 500 parents of the schoolchildren and relatives of other people missing have spent four days and nights cooped up in a gymnasium in the port city of Jindo, which is the centre of the rescue operations.

Tempers have frayed over the slow pace of the recovery and frequent changes in information.

President Park Geun-hye was booed by some of the relatives when she visited the gym on Thursday.

Captain Lee Joon-seok, 69, was arrested on Saturday on charges of negligence for quitting the ship while leaving passengers on board along with two other crew members, including the third mate.

Lee told television cameras when he was arrested that he feared passengers would be swept away by the strong tides in the area and did not order a general evacuation.

He has not said why he left the ship when the passengers were instructed to remain on board.

Pupils at the school in Ansan, a gritty commuter town, set up shrines to the dead and posted messages for the missing.

The vice-principal of the school, who was on the ferry and survived the capsize, hanged himself outside the gymnasium in Jindo in another blow to the school and his body was discovered on Friday.

The sinking looks set to be the country’s worst maritime disaster in 21 years in terms of loss of life.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

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Condolences from Thailand to UK on Prince Philip’s death

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Condolences from Thailand to UK on Prince Philip’s death | Thaiger
FILE PHOTO: The King and Queen of Thailand greet the King and Queen of England

The leaders of Thailand have sent messages of condolences to their British counterparts following the death of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh on Friday. His Majesty King Vajiralongkorn of Thailand has sent a message of condolence to Prince Philip’s widow, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, released by the Thai Royal Household Bureau, stating that the King and Queen are deeply saddened by Prince Philip’s death.

“We all in Thailand join the people of Great Britain in mourning this great loss, a sense of loss being shared by peoples around the world, whose lives have been touched and enriched by His Royal Highness’ enduring legacies in their diversity.

We still recall, with much pride and warmth, the two historic state visits made by Your Majesty in 1972 and 1996, with His Royal Highness at your side, as guests of my beloved father, His late Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Just as important to the people of Thailand was how His Royal Highness wished, during his later visits on behalf of the World Wildlife Fund, to share with them his love of nature and passion for the environment, thus inspiring a number of essential projects of conservation.

May I, on behalf of the people of Thailand, express to Your Majesty, the Royal Family and the British people our heartfelt sympathy and condolences for this truly grievous loss.”

Meanwhile, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha released a statement on behalf of the people of Thailand, saying their thoughts and prayers were with the people of Britain. PM Prayut sent a message to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson praising Prince Philip’s “exceptional leadership”.

“On behalf of the Royal Thai Government and the people of Thailand, I wish to extend to Your Right Honourable and the British people our deepest condolences and sympathy for this irreparable loss. We join the British people in mourning the loss of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Our thoughts and prayers are with the British people in this time of sadness”

Prince Philip, who was married to Queen Elizabeth II for 73 years, died Friday at the age of 99 after recently being released from King Edward VII Hospital recovering from a February surgery for a heart condition. He was the longest-serving consort in British history. The Duke of Edinburgh had visited Thailand twice, escorting the Queen for state visits with King Bhumibol Adulyadej in 1972 and 1996.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World & Thai Examiner

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Buckingham Palace announces the death of Prince Philip

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Buckingham Palace announces the death of Prince Philip | Thaiger

Prince Philip, the husband and consort to Queen Elizabeth II, has died at the age of 99. The Duke of Edinburgh was the longest-serving consort in the history of the United Kingdom, retiring in 2017 after more than 20,000 public engagements. Born on the Greek island of Corfu, Philip had 4 children, 8 grandchildren, and 9 great-grandchildren with the Queen. Buckingham Palace released a statement mourning the loss.

Prince Philip was born on June 10, 1921 on the island of Corfu, Greece. He married Princess Elizabeth on November 20, 1947.

“It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will be made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

Buckingham Palace announces the death of Prince Philip | News by Thaiger

Buckingham Palace announces the death of Prince Philip | News by Thaiger

 

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Prince Philip dies at the age of 99 – Buckingham Palace

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Prince Philip dies at the age of 99 – Buckingham Palace | Thaiger

The husband of Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip, has died at the age of 99. Buckingham Palace announced his death in the last hour.

Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip in 1947, 5 years before she became Queen. He was the longest-serving royal consort in British history.

The couple had 4 children, 8 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

SOURCE: BBC

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