Five dead, 100 rescued in ferry mishap off East Java

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At least five people were killed and more than 100 others rescued safely after a ferry caught fire in waters off the East Java province in western Indonesia yesterday evening, China's Xinhua news agency reported rescuers as saying.

"A total of five bodies are already placed at sea port, and now a total of 95 people are in our ship after we rescued them safely. There are also scores of rescued passengers in the Kartika ship, but I do not know the precise number," Muhammad Arifin, head of Search and Rescue Office of the East Java province, told Xinhua by phone from a rescue ship.

Previously, seven people had been rescued according to a spokesperson of the national search and rescue agency, Marsudi.

Ferry Mutiara Sentosa caught fire in waters off Masalembo of the Sumenep district, Marsudi had earlier told Xinhua by phone.

A search and rescue operation for the missing is still going on, involving two helicopters, scores of ships and around 200 personnel, he said.

- Bernama 

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