At least thirteen fishermen drowned on Sunday when their boat ploughed into a passing ship off the Red Sea coast, Egyptian officials and local leaders said.
Thirteen others were rescued after the accident, which occurred after dawn near Raes Gharib in the Gulf of Suez, some 360km south of Cairo, according to Ahmed Fawzy, an aide to South Sinai's governor, and Suez fishermen’s leader Bakry Abul-Hassan.
The boat had 40 Egyptian fishermen aboard, and rescue and search teams aided by a military helicopter are looking for the 14 missing, Fawzy said, adding that the bodies of 13 fishermen had been pulled from the water.
The accident took place when an Egyptian fishing boat collided with a Jeddah-bound Kuwaiti container ship travelling from Italy, Red Sea Port Authority spokesperson Abdul-Rahim Mustafa told Ahram Online.
"Our boat capsised in minutes and some of us climbed onto the upturned hull and survived," one of the rescued fishermen told private satellite channel CBC.
A port official said ten local naval boats were helping to search for those missing.
In February 2006, around 1,000 people, mostly Egyptians, were killed when a ferry caught fire and sank in the Red Sea, in one of the country's worst sea disasters.