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At least 9 members of same family dead in Egyptian lake shipwreck

At least nine people from the same family, including three children, have died in a shipwreck in an Egyptian lake, with rescue workers still searching Tuesday for at least five missing passengers, authorities said.

The boat was carrying at least 19 people and capsized late Monday in the Lake of Mariut, near the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, while returning from an outing, they said.

Rescue crews recovered at least nine bodies, including those of children who were 1, 1-1/2 and 4 years old. Workers were searching for others, ambulance officials said.

At least five people were rescued and taken to hospitals, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to journalists.

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Any survivors still in the cold waters of the lake, which lies west of Alexandria, could go into shock as temperatures fell Tuesday.

Relatives spent the night on the shoreline, hoping that their loved ones would be rescued. Calls for volunteer divers to help with the search circulated on social media.

Citing relatives, local media reported that the victims were returning from an outing to an island in the lake. The passengers arrived on the island in two groups, but they were all packed on the boat for their return, the privately owned Al-Masry Al-Youm daily reported.

Alexandria’s governor, Mohammed el-Sharif, said late Monday that the boat was small and overcrowded, a possible cause for its capsizing.

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Most boats on the lake work without licenses, he said.


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