Argentina sub crew’s families hold protest over end of search


Argentina sub crew's families hold protest over end of search

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Dozens of relatives and friends of the crew marched in protest over the end of the search and rescue operation

Relatives of crew members of an Argentine submarine which disappeared in the southern Atlantic have criticised the government for giving up the search for survivors.

They marched through the streets of the port of Mar del Plata demanding the rescue effort resumed.

The navy has said there is no longer any hope of finding the crew alive.

A Russian search module is scouring shapes on the sea bed which could be the wreck of the submarine.

Some family members called for President Mauricio Macri to come to the port to talk to them.

They complain that they were not advised before the general public that the rescue mission had ended.

They have also said they want to know why they were kept in the dark for days over reports of an explosion near the submarine's last recorded location.

President Macri has promised a full investigation into what happened to answer the families' concerns.

A naval spokesman said the search for the wreckage was still taking place in the South Atlantic.

Argentina ends missing submarine rescue mission

Water caused submarine battery short circuit

Argentina president pledges enquiry

A Russian-owned unmanned remotely-operated vehicle has been searching shapes detected by sonar on the sea bed.

The disaster has prompted questions over the state of the military in Argentina which has one of Latin America's smallest defence budgets in relation to the size of its economy.

Correspondents say there is a likelihood that members of the navy's high command will be removed, but the wreck of the submarine needs to be found to answer the questions over what happened on board.

The navy said on 27 November that water had entered the submarine's snorkel causing its battery to short-circuit before it went missing.

The navy had previously said international organisations had detected a noise that could have been the submarine's implosion on the same day contact was lost.

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