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Sound Heard in Argentine Sub Search Was Likely Explosion

Sound Heard in Argentine Sub Search Was Likely ExplosionSound Heard in Argentine Sub Search Was Likely Explosion

An apparent explosion occurred near the time and place an Argentine submarine went missing, the country’s navy reported Thursday, prompting relatives of the vessel’s 44 crew members to burst into tears and some to say they had lost hope of a rescue.

Navy spokesman Enrique Balbi said the search will continue until there is full certainty about the fate of the ARA San Juan, despite the evidence of an explosion and with more than a week having passed since the submarine disappeared. It was originally scheduled to arrive Monday at Argentina’s Mar del Plata Navy Base, AP reported.

The US Navy and an international nuclear test-ban monitoring organization said a “hydro-acoustic anomaly” was produced just hours after the navy lost contact with the sub on Nov. 15. It was near the submarine’s last known location.

“According to this report, there was an explosion,” Balbi told reporters. “We don’t know what caused an explosion of these characteristics at this site on this date.”

The navy spokesman described the “anomaly” as “singular, short, violent and non-nuclear.” Relatives of the crew who had gathered at the Mar del Plata base to receive psychological counseling broke into tears and hugged each other after they received the news.

Some fell on their knees or clung to a fence crowded with blue-and-white Argentine flags, rosary beads and messages of support. Most declined to speak, while a few others lashed out in anger at the navy’s response.

 

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