Death toll from capsized Cameroon ferry rises to 17 - state media

Cameroon's national flag. (iStock).
Cameroon's national flag. (iStock).

The death toll from a Cameroon ferry that capsized this week has risen to 17 after more bodies were found, state radio said on Wednesday, though the total number of victims was still unknown.

Fourteen more bodies were recovered from the Bakassi Peninsula on Tuesday, two days after the ferry sunk off southwestern Cameroon, Cameroon Radio Television reported.

A source with local authorities confirmed the details to AFP.

State media had initially reported that three victims - of Cameroonian, Nigerian and French nationality - were found and more than 100 people were rescued when the ship went down overnight Sunday to Monday.

The Austrheim, a trading vessel converted into a passenger ship was supposed to carry 75 people, but it was "overloaded," according to a statement from the defence ministry.

So far, 111 survivors have been rescued, according to state radio and a local leader. Searches continued on Wednesday for survivors or bodies.

The ship left Sunday from Calabar, Nigeria, and was due to dock at Tiko in southwest Cameroon but hit a sandbar before capsizing, according to the ministry.

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