Five more bodies found on wrecked Italian ship

January 18th, 2012 - 3:26 am ICT by IANS  

Moscow/Rome, Jan 18 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Rescuers found five more bodies Tuesday on the capsized Costa Concordia cruise ship, bringing the overall toll to 11, Italy’s ANSA news agency said.

All the five victims — four men and a woman — were wearing life jackets.

The grim discovery was made shortly after Italian Navy specialists used explosives to blow up holes in the ship’s hull to speed up the search.

Italy’s Environment Minister Corrado Clini said in an interview with Canale 5 that there was still a chance to find survivors onboard the sunken ship, “but we must hurry up.”

The Costa Concordia, carrying 4,200 passengers, capsized after hitting rocks off the coast of Isola del Giglio Friday night.

Captain Francesco Schettino, 52, claimed that the ship hit a rock formation that had not appeared on nautical charts and had not been picked up by the ship’s navigation systems.

However, Italy’s Corriere della Sera daily said Monday the captain steered the Costa Concordia toward the island to please the vessel’s head waiter, who was born on Giglio.

Schettino is suspected of multiple manslaughter and abandoning a ship in distress and faces up to 15 years in prison, Prosecutor Francesco Verusio said.

Twenty-three people are still listed as missing, ANSA said.

Meanwhile, about 130 Indians aboard the ship have also been saved. India has set up a control room in both New Delhi and in its mission in Italy to help families find out about their relatives who were aboard the luxury liner.

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