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  Middle East & Africa
S. Korean Student Feared to Have Drowned on S. African Beach
By Benedict Pather
S. African Correspondent
Helicopter rescue is being conducted on the site of accident on

Cape Town, S. Africa — A 19-year-old South Korean student is feared to have drowned at a Cape Town beach on Sept. 7 (Tuesday), 2010, local time after he was swept away to sea at Cape Town's popular Camps Bay Beach.

Mark Thompson from The National Sea Rescue institute (NSRI) said the young man, who has not been named, was caught in a strong rip current while swimming at the beach on Tuesday afternoon around 5 p.m.

The NSRI and police divers unit continued their search early this morning to locate the student who they fear has drowned. A rescue helicopter has also been dispatched.

He and 20 other students from the LAL Language school were bathing at the beach.

According to eye witnesses the victim and his friends were playing and laughing on the shore moments before the tragedy struck.

A women who was walking along the beach heard a girl screaming about two people drowning and immediately called emergency services.

A French student who was swimming with the Korean also got caught in the current but was later found on the shore exhausted and in complete disarray.

He later told how he frantically tried to help his friend but couldn't and was forced to swim back to safety. The Frenchmen was taken to a city hospital where he was treated for shock.

The missing teenager arrived in Cape Town a week ago on a tour with his language school. He was planning on spending a year in South Africa.

The Korean Embassy together with the Department of International affairs and Co-operation are working together to inform the boy's family of the incident.

The award winning Camps Bay Beach is visited daily by thousands of foreigns and locals. The tragedy comes as a shock to city and tourism officials who stress that swimmers exercise caution when entering the water.

For further information about the incident contact the South Korean Embassy in Pretoria on +27 12 460 2508

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Mr. Benedict Pather is a South African Journalist and reporter for the Seoul Times. He mostly writes about events relating to Seoul's foreign communities. His hobbies include listening to music and travelling.






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