20 Sailors Rescued Near Marshall Isl.

Marshall Islands - map, pacific ocean, australasia AP

HONOLULU - The U.S. Coast Guard says 20 sailors were rescued Friday near the Pacific's Marshall Islands after their boat sank in rough seas.

The Jeljelet Ae was hauling construction materials from the Marshall port of Majuro to an island 200 miles away Thursday when the crew was forced to abandon ship and board life rafts.

The Coast Guard says its Hawaii headquarters received a distress signal and quickly alerted other members of a multinational group that monitors problems in the vast reaches of the Pacific.

The two life rafts carrying the crew were spotted by a search plane, which relayed the location to search vessels.

The Guard says a fishing boat reached the rafts at 6 p.m. Friday and rescued all 20 crew members.

The Guard said in a statement that the condition of the sailors wasn't immediately known.
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