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Foul Weather Slows Search for Missing Argentine Sub With 44 Aboard

  • VOA News

This undated photo provided by the Argentine Navy shows an ARA San Juan, a German-built diesel-electric submarine, near Buenos Aires, Argentina. Argentina's Navy said Nov. 17, 2017, it has lost contact with the vessel Wednesday.

An international fleet of ships and planes is fighting eight-meter high waves and 74 kilometer per hour winds searching for the ARA San Juan, a missing Argentine submarine with a crew of 44.

The 2,000-ton, 66 meter long, German-built diesel-electric submersible disappeared Wednesday 430 kilometers off the coast of Argentina. The San Juan has been in service since 1985. Argentina's first female submarine officer, Eliana Krawczyk, is a member of the crew.

Saturday, a series of satellite calls, lasting just a few seconds, that might - or might not - have come from the missing sub, raised hopes for the crew.

Military and research ships and planes from Brazil, the United States, Chile, Uruguay and Britain have joined the search. Britain, which fought a war with Argentina in the 1980s, is using an Arctic research vessel with scientific sensors in the search. The United States has sent a NASA research plane, a submarine-hunting plane, along with a submarine rescue team.

Pope Francis, a native of Argentina, is said to be praying "fervently" for the crew's safe return.

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