'Hope and Hopelessness' Mark Search for Missing Submarine

26 November, 2017, 01:09 | Author: Warren Cooper
  • Cmdr. Michael Eberlein commanding officer of Undersea Rescue Command, speaks with the Argentine press on Nov. 20. The URC is supporting search and rescue efforts for the missing Argentine sub ARA San Juan

Hope is fading among relatives of the 44 crew members aboard a missing Argentine submarine.

Argentina's navy insisted a missing submarine appeared to be in good condition before it set off on a training mission, despite fears it later exploded under the sea with 44 crew members aboard.

But many relatives of the crew have lost hope since the navy announced Thursday that there had been an explosion on board the submarine, which experts said was likely linked to a problem with its batteries and would likely have been catastrophic.

"Despite all the effort that has been carried out, we haven't been able to find the San Juan submarine", Balbi told reporters. The submarine was en route to Mar del Plata when it reported an electrical malfunction shortly before disappearing last week.

More than a dozen airplanes and ships have been participating in the multinational search despite stormy weather that has caused powerful waves.

The U.S. Navy has deployed unmanned underwater vehicles, or "mini-subs", equipped with sonar in the search. Many have been critical of the official response, claiming the Navy was too slow in accepting worldwide offers of assistance and that the vessel had not been properly maintained.

Fitch keeps South Africa's credit rating at junk
Moody's said it would reassess SA's debt after the ANC elective conference in December, and the main budget in February next year. The agency said in its report that weak economic growth had led to deterioration in public finances beyond previous expectations.

"The problem with being the loved one of someone who is missing is that the mourning process can not start, because they are still out there somewhere", local psychologist Guillermo Bruchstein said in a Saturday television interview.

Around 30 boats and planes and 4,000 people from Argentina, the United States, Britain, Chile and Brazil have joined the search for the submarine, which last transmitted its location about 480 km (300 miles) from the coast.

Opposition politicians blamed the loss on a reduction in funding for the armed forces, whose budget has declined since the fall of a military dictatorship in the 1980s.

President Mauricio Macri on Friday ordered an inquiry to "know the truth" about what happened to the San Juan.

"Until we have the complete information, we do not have to look for the guilty, to look for those responsible".

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