Ahn expresses condolences over deaths of Coast Guard officers

SEOUL-- Transition team Chairman Ahn Cheol-soo expressed "deep condolences" Friday over the deaths of two Coast Guard officers in a helicopter crash earlier in the day.

Ahn called for utmost efforts to rescue the crew member who remains unaccounted for and wished for the quick recovery of a fourth member who was injured.

"I express deep condolences to the two Coast Guard officers who lost their lives in the line of duty trying to rescue crew members in distress," Ahn was quoted as saying by Choi Jeehyun, a transition team spokesperson.

The four people were aboard the Sikorsky S-92 helicopter when it went down in waters 370 kilometers southwest of Mara Island at 1:32 a.m., according to the Coast Guard.

The crash happened shortly after the helicopter took off to return to Busan after dropping off six Coast Guard rescuers on a patrol boat that was on its way to help with rescue operations for crew members missing from a tug boat in waters near Taiwan.

Ahn said he hopes rescue operations for the crew members will proceed quickly in cooperation with Taiwanese authorities and called on the government to provide sufficient assistance to the families of the victims and the missing, Choi said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency