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Three dead as Indonesia-bound boat sinks off Malaysia

Published on Jul 25, 2014 1:22 PM

KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - At least three people died after an overloaded boat ferrying Indonesians home for the coming Eid al-Fitr festival sank off southern Malaysia, a maritime official said on Friday.

Three bodies were recovered, 10 people were rescued and eight more remained missing in the incident early Thursday, the latest in a string of tragic boat accidents to mar the run-up to the Islamic holiday.

The boat capsized in rough seas off Malaysia's Johor state with 21 Indonesian illegal migrant workers aboard and sank, said Iskandar Ishak, local head of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.

"An intense sea and air search and rescue operation is underway in the Malacca Straits with sea conditions being slightly choppy," he said.

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