France sends condolences to China over ship sinking

Paris, June 3 (IANS) France has sent its condolences to China over the sinking of a cruise boat in Yangtze River on Monday which so far has left seven people dead and over 400 missing, a government official said on Wednesday.

“We were extremely shocked to learn of the sinking. France extends its condolences to the victims’ families.

“Our thoughts are also with the families of the hundreds of people who are missing,” Romain Nadal, France’s foreign ministry spokesperson said, Xinhua news agency reported.

“In these tragic circumstances, France assures the Chinese authorities and people of its solidarity.”

There were over 450 people on board the Eastern Star when it sank “within one or two minutes” after being hit by a tornado in Jianli, Hubei Province, according to the ship’s captain and chief engineer, both of whom survived.

As of Tuesday night, 14 people had been rescued, with seven confirmed dead and about 430 missing.

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