Tokyo, Jan 27 (EFE).- Eight crew members were declared dead in the shipwreck of a freighter Wednesday off the coast of Nagasaki, six of them Chinese and two Myanmar nationals, a spokesperson for the Japan Coast Guard, which is still searching for nine missing, told EFE.
Japanese authorities updated the death toll in the incident after previously confirming two deaths among the crew, made up of 22 people.
The Nagasaki Coast Guard continues to search and rescue another nine crew members who are still missing since the incident that took place early Wednesday.
Through search operations, in which the Japanese army and the South Korean Coast Guard also participated, 13 of the crew were found in the hours after the shipwreck, although about a dozen did not show vital signs.
The eight deceased were among them, while the other five are now conscious.
Japan is in contact with the authorities of China and Myanmar to organize the transfer of the bodies of the deceased, according to the spokesman.
The South Korean Coast Guard joined their Japanese counterparts in the rescue efforts after also receiving the distress signal from the wrecked ship.
The strong winds and the bad state of the sea in the middle of an intense cold wave are making search and rescue work difficult.
The sinking occurred off Japanese waters as the Hong Kong-registered 6,651-ton Jintan vessel was en route to the port of the South Korean city of Incheon, carrying timber and other goods.
The ship was sailing with 22 people on board, 14 Chinese citizens and eight Myanmar nationals. EFE