Mongolian-flagged cargo ship with North Korean crew sinks off South Korea

SEOUL Thu Apr 3, 2014 7:24pm EDT

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SEOUL (Reuters) - A Mongolian-flagged cargo ship with 16 North Korean crew members has sunk off the southern coast of South Korea, a South Korean coast guard official said on Friday.

Three crew have been rescued and a search for the 13 crew members still missing is ongoing, the official said.

The ship was sailing from the Chongjin region on North Korea's east coast and was headed for a Chinese port carrying iron ore, the official said, requesting anonymity as he was not authorized to speak to media.

(Reporting by Ju-min Park, writing by Jack Kim; Editing by Richard Pullin)