Myanmar ferry toll reaches 19: Official

Students were travelling to a football tournament when overloaded ferry sank.

Bangkok: Nineteen people died and three are missing after a boat carrying teachers and school children sank in Myanmar, an official said on Thursday, updating an earlier toll.

The students were travelling to a football tournament when the overloaded ferry sank yesterday on a river in the flood-prone Irrawaddy Delta region.

"The latest information is 19 people were killed and three others missing. About 79 people were on board when the boat sank," according to the official, who did not want to be named.

The Irrawaddy Delta was the area that suffered worst when Cyclone Nargis hit southern Myanmar in May 2008. The catastrophic storm killed around 138,000 people and left thousands more homeless.

Most people living in the low-lying region -- the least developed part of the impoverished army-ruled country – rely heavily on poorly-maintained river ferries for transportation around its flooded plains.


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