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S Korea searches for missing crew after fishing boat capsizes

President Yoon Suk-yeol ordered other naval and civil resources to help as coast guard ships were scouring the area
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SEOUL: Nine people were missing on Sunday after a fishing boat capsized off the southwest coast of South Korea, authorities said, with the country's president urging stepped-up search and rescue efforts.

The fishing boat overturned just before midnight on Saturday, with three crew members picked up by rescuers, the coast guard said.

Video released by the coast guard showed a rescue boat approaching the overturned fishing vessel, with the three crew members in the water near the red hull.

Coast guard ships were scouring the area for nine others, and President Yoon Suk-yeol ordered other naval and civil resources to help, his office said in a statement.

In late January, at least eight people were reported dead after a cargo ship sank between South Korea and Japan, Chinese officials said.

Meanwhile, rescue workers were searching by sea and air for nine people missing after a fishing boat capsized in waters off South Korea's southwestern coast, authorities said on Sunday.

The 24-tonne vessel overturned in waters off the coast of Sinan county late on Saturday night, according to the interior ministry.

Three crew members were rescued by a nearby boat, but nine others -- including two foreigners -- remained missing, the ministry added in a statement.

More than a dozen vessels and three aircraft from the coastguard and the navy had been deployed to search for the missing people, it said.

Most of the crew are believed to have left the capsized boat, Yonhap news agency reported, citing Interior Minister Lee Sang-min.

President Yoon Suk-yeol urged maximum efforts for the rescue operation, ordering the mobilisation of "all available resources" to widen the search area, his office said. - Reuters/AFP

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