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El Salvador castaway returns home

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 - 01:29

Feb. 12 - El Salvador's ''castaway'' Jose Salvador Alvarenga returns home to El Salvador to a rousing welcome after spending a year adrift at sea. Sarah Toms reports.

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A castaway from El Salvador - who says he spent more than a year adrift in the Pacific - has finally arrived home. Jose Salvador Alvarenga was met by friends, relations and officials at the international airport after flying from the US. Weak and appearing overwhelmed he was unable to speak Dozens of journalists gathered around as he was welcomed by the foreign minister. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) EL SALVADOR'S FOREIGN MINISTER, JAIME MIRANDA, SAYING: "Jose has not only returned from a long and intense journey by sea, but also his return from the Marshall Islands has been prolonged and has required a lot of endurance. Due to his fragile health, it is very important for him to receive adequate medical attention and we also ask that his privacy is respected all the time." Alvarenga washed up two weeks ago in the Marshall islands. The 37-year-old says he survived by catching fish and birds with his bare hands. He told officials he set sail on a shark fishing trip from Mexico at the end of 2012...with a friend who died on board. That was some 10,000 km away....but the boat was blown off course.

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El Salvador castaway returns home

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 - 01:29