Distraught families of missing South Korean ferry passengers await news
Friday, April 18, 2014 - 01:33
April 18 - Distraught family members of ferry passengers urge authorities to find their loved ones, as the search continues for 268 people still missing. Mana Rabiee reports.
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This temporary shelter in Jindo, South Korea, is where desperate parents wait for news of their missing children.
Nearly 270 ferry passengers, almost all of them students from a single high school, are missing after their boat sank on Wednesday.
Hope is fading that any of them will be found alive.
The wait for news - good or bad - is almost unbearable.
The missing are presumed trapped inside the sunken ferry.
Families urge authorities to speed up the search and rescue.
The father and sister of one missing passenger refusing to believe the worst.
(SOUNDBITE) (Korean) 47-YEAR-OLD FATHER OF MISSING PASSENGER, KIM CHANG-GOO SAYING:
"They have to hurry to rescue survivors (from the ferry) but the divers are not going in. The number of survivors will reach its limit after today."
(SOUNDBITE) (Korean) 22-YEAR-OLD SISTER OF MISSING PASSENGER, KIM HA-NA, SAYING:
"We hear survivors (inside the ship) are dying."
At Danwon High School on the outskirts of Seoul, a community is still in shock.
Students leave messages for their missing classmates and teachers, asking for their safe return.
And on the port at Jindo, Buddhist monks pray for the missing.
Family members wait for news from the rescue teams, inconsolable.
Some 475 passengers and crew were on the ferry when it started to sink.
Nearly 180 were rescued and the official death count was at 28 on Friday morning.
Investigators are focussing on possible crew negligence as well as other causes.
On Friday, prosecutors issued arrest warrants for the captain and two other crew members for failing to help passengers.
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