Muscat: The South Korean Embassy in Oman is closely following the news related to a ferry carrying 459 people that sank off South Korea's southern coast. Daesik Kim, Korean ambassador to the Sultanate, said, "We express our deepest condolences to the bereaved families."
Authorities said 164 people had been rescued, while four deaths were confirmed, including a female crew member and a student. South Korean rescue teams, as well as divers, were still working to find 291 people who remain unaccounted for after the ferry sank. "We sincerely hope that rescue operations are able to save more people," the Korean ambassador said.
Daesik Kim added that the focus of the government "was still on rescuing survivors."
Most of the passengers on board the ferry are believed to have been teenagers and their teachers from a high school near Seoul who were on a field trip to the Jeju island, about 100km south of the Korean peninsula.
"One of the four people confirmed dead was a student on the school trip. The ship has a capacity to hold about 900 people, has an overall length of 146 metres (480 feet) and weighs 6,586 gross tonnes. Shipping records show it was built in Japan in 1994," according to a Reuters report.