Woman denies being Schettino's lover

2012-01-20 16:01

Cruise ship rescue continues

2012-01-18 08:49

Watch this footage from the Italian Coast Guard of the continued rescue efforts around the Costa Concordia. WATCH

Rome - A 25-year-old Moldovan woman who was on the Costa Concordia ship when it ran aground denied on Friday that Commander Francesco Schettino was drinking with her and insisted that the man was not her lover.

"Come on, I know what you want to ask me," Domnica Cemortan told a journalist from Corriere della Sera. "I am not Commander Schettino's lover. Do you know why? He shows everyone a picture of his daughter when she was a baby. A man who is looking for a lover does not act like this," she said.

She told her interviewer, speaking by phone from Moldova, that she was a Costa Crociere hostess but was on holiday on the Concordia. Schettino was close to her after the accident because she was translating his instructions to passengers in Russian, she said.

She confirmed that the crew's first reaction was to tell passengers that it was only an electrical problem and advise them to go back to their cabins. She defended Schettino from criticism, calling him a "hero" who "did everything that was possible".

Read more on:    costa  |  italy  |  cruise liner disaster

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