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Russian Commander Says Vessel Preparing to Tow Submarine


Russia's Pacific Fleet commander says a rescue vessel has attached a cable to a small submarine that is stuck on the ocean floor, and will try to tow it to shallow waters.

Admiral Viktor Fyodorov says the Russian rescue vessel also will try to raise the submarine, which has a crew of seven men.

He says the submarine, which is stranded off the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia's far east, has enough air to last until Monday. Russian naval officials earlier said the sub had only 24 hours of air left.

Meanwhile, the United States, Japan and Britain are sending emergency equipment to the site.

Russian officials say the submarine became tangled Thursday in a fishing net and was stranded nearly 200 meters under water.

The incident comes nearly five years after a Russian nuclear submarine sank in the Barents Sea following an explosion. All 118 men on board died.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was criticized for not immediately asking for international help after the August 2000 accident. It is not clear when officials first learned of this latest incident.

Some information for this story provided by AFP and Reuters.

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