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Shipwreck in Congo River leaves 9 dead, scores missing

By Elwyn Lopez and Greg Botelho, CNN
updated 4:04 AM EST, Mon December 24, 2012
  • A ship carrying about 300 people and tons of merchandise wrecks in the Congo River
  • Since Friday, authorities have confirmed nine dead and about 200 survivors
  • About 100 people who had been aboard the ship are still believed to be missing

(CNN) -- Searchers in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday looked for about 100 people still missing from a shipwreck that more than 200 people survived and in which nine are confirmed dead.

The boat sank around 9:30 p.m. local time (3:30 p.m. ET) Friday along the Congo River near Maluku, which is part of the capital city of Kinshasa in the western part of the central African nation, according to a United Nations radio report.

The vessel -- the MB Mobek, which was early into its route and was carrying several tons of merchandise -- went down after striking an obstacle.

Maluku Mayor Papy Epiana told UN Radio on Sunday that authorities don't have a copy of the ship's manifest "because we haven't seen the general or the commander." But they believe about 100 people are missing, while more than 200 survived.

"We have recovered nine bodies since Friday," Epiana said.

CNN's Elwyn Lopez reported from Atlanta, and CNN's Greg Botelho wrote this story.

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