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11 Bodies Recovered Near Sunken South Korean Ship

Rescuers are searching for survivors following the sinking of a pollock-fishing vessel in the Bering Sea on Sunday night. Seven people have been rescued, but more than 40 remain missing.

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Yonhap / Reuters

Fishing vessel Oryong 501 operated by Sajo Industries, which sank in the Bering Sea on Monday, is seen in this undated picture provided by Sajo Industries and released on December 1, 2014.

Eleven bodies have been recovered by fishermen in the area a South Korean fishing vessel sank on Sunday night, AP reported.

A South Korean fishing ministry official, who did not wish to be named, said the bodies appeared to be from the Oriong-500, which sunk in the Bering Sea off the coast of eastern Russia in stormy weather.

Russian rescuers recovered four empty lifeboats in the search for a South Korean fishing vessel that sank in the Bering Sea on Sunday night, decreasing the hopes of finding the 52 crew members still missing in the icy cold waters, AFP reported.

Rescuers also spotted one more dead body floating in the water, but were unable to recover it due to rough weather conditions, Oleg Karev of the marine rescue centre for the port of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky said.

So far, seven people have been rescued, and one Korean sailor was confirmed dead and his body recovered.

The original report from Monday follows below.

So far, seven survivors and one body have been pulled out of the water, officials said.

Artur Rets, maritime rescue chief for Russia's Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky port, said, "When the fish were being hauled in, the vessel was hit by a wave," Reuters reported.

He said that the vessel, Oriong-501, had sunk at 12:30 a.m. ET, with 62 people on board.

A South Korean fisheries ministry official said weather and water conditions were complicating the search for the missing crew members, the Associated Press reported.

The official said it's believed the 2,100-ton, 35-year-old pollock fishing vessel began to list when stormy weather caused storage areas to flood with sea water.

The crew included 35 Indonesians, 13 Filipinos, and 11 South Koreans. A Russian inspector was also on board.

Kim Kang-ho of Sajo Industries, the ship's owners, said the ship left for the Bering Sea from Busan, South Korea, on July 10, AP reported.

South Korea's Foreign Ministry said it asked Russian officials to work quickly to locate and rescue the missing crew members.

Francis Whittaker is a homepage editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Francis Whittaker at francis.whittaker@buzzfeed.com.

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