New target in search for missing Argentine sub

2017-12-12 08:12
A picture of the Argentine submarine ARA San Juan written in Spanish "Come on steel men. We will wait for you at home" hangs from the fence at the naval base in Mar del Plata. (Vicente Robles, AP)

A picture of the Argentine submarine ARA San Juan written in Spanish "Come on steel men. We will wait for you at home" hangs from the fence at the naval base in Mar del Plata. (Vicente Robles, AP)

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Buenos Aires - Workers used sonar equipment on Monday to get the facts on objects found 26 days after an Argentine sub went missing with 44 crew members aboard.

President Mauricio Macri and the navy consider the crew to have been tragically lost.

But family members desperate for closure have been pushing for the search to continue until the vessel is located and questions about its fate are answered, despite a series of false hopes.

"A new object has been found at 1 000m with sonar search equipment in the South Atlantic. And it is being looked at to determine if it could be the Argentine sub," along with a second object at about 700 meters, navy spokesperson Enrique Balbi told reporters.

They were spotted by the US vessel Atlantis.

Authorities have not set any date for when the search might be officially abandoned.

The navy's final contact with the German-built ARA San Juan, a 34-year-old diesel-electric sub, came on November 15, when it was sailing in the South Atlantic 450km from the coast.

In its final communication, the submarine reported it had overcome a mechanical breakdown that resulted from a short circuit due to water that seeped through the vessel's snorkel.

Three hours later, a noise similar to an explosion was recorded 48km from where the crew had given its last report.

The position was in line with the planned path the submarine would have taken to reach its base in Mar del Plata, according to the navy.


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