Jan. 22 - Passengers from a research ship stranded in Antarctica arrive in Austraila. Julie Noce reports.
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Passengers from a Russian-owned research ship that was stuck in ice in Antarctica for a week arrived in Australia Wednesday. (3105)
The Australian vessel the Aurora Australis ferried 52 passengers back to terra firma after an intensive rescue mission also involving Chinese, French and American vessels.
Expedition leader, Professor Chris Turney.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) PROFESSOR CHRIS TURNEY, EXPEDITION LEADER SAYING:
"A fantastic example of international cooperation was when the Chinese and Australian vessels worked together with rotations using the Chinese helicopter to deliver the AAE (Australasian Antarctic Expedition) team from the Shokalskiy to the Aurora Australis and it was an incredible example of professionalism and work under the Antarctic Treaty. It was really fabulous."
The rescue operation became complicated after the Chinese vessel that was supposed to rescue the passengers itself got stuck in ice. (5606- no access china)
But throughout it all, the stranded passengers remained upbeat and passed the time learning languages, yoga and knot tying. (2127-access all)
The group had sailed out from New Zealand to commemorate the 100th anniversary of an Antarctic journey by Australian explorer Douglas Mawson.