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Three Filipinos Die, Two Missing as Panamanian Freighter Sinks

January 28, 1993

TOKYO (AP) _ Three Filipino crewmen died and two others were missing Thursday after a Panamanian freighter sank in rough seas off Taiwan, Japan’s coast guard reported.

Twelve Filipino crewmen and the Japanese chief engineer were rescued by a Liberian container ship and Taiwanese and Japanese military helicopters, said Sadao Uetake of the Maritime Safety Agency.

The Marine Hawks’ cargo of lumber shifted in high waves and the 2,493-ton freigher sank about three hours before the Liberian ship, Australian Endurance, reached the scene, Uetake said.

The Liberian ship rescued seven crewmen, Uetake said. A Taiwanese helicopter picked up five Filipinos. A Japanese helicopter lifted up four others, but three died shortly after, Uetake said.

The ship, operated by Naigai Unyu K.K. of Japan, was heading for Iwakuni in southern Japan from Malaysia when it sank 250 miles southwest of Japan’s southernmost island, Ishigaki Shima.

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