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31 sailors missing after Thai warship sinks in storm


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Bangkok: Thai warships and helicopters were working to rescue 31 missing sailors after a navy ship sank in the Gulf of Thailand, the Royal Thai Navy (RTN) said on Monday.

A total of 106 crew were on board the corvette HTMS Sukhothai, which sank during a storm. By noon on Monday, 75 of them had been brought to safety, according to the RTN statement posted on its Twitter account.

The HTMS Sukhothai sank at around 00:12 am local time on Monday (1712 GMT Sunday), following a loss of power and consequently flooding of the ship, RTN spokesperson admiral Pokkrong Monthatpalin said.

The warship was on patrol 20 nautical miles from the port in Bang Saphan district of Prachuap Khiri Khan province when strong waves caused water to enter the electrical systems, which resulted in a loss of power and control for the ship.

The RTN has dispatched three frigates and two helicopters with rescue equipment to the scene, but strong winds and waves prevented rescue efforts, according to the statement.

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