Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 21st 2014 Contents A23
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SANTO DOMINGO---A Haitian man
died after being attacked by a mob in the
Dominican Republic for allegedly stabbing
his 4-month-old daughter, authorities said
The violence in the poor village of La
Victoria began late Saturday when Jean
Lounis got into an argument with the in-
fant's mother, Patricia Philomar, and at-
tacked her, police said in a statement.
When the mother ran away to call po-
lice, Lounis allegedly stabbed his daughter
in the neck and carried her outside by one
leg. Neighbors then beat Lounis and
stabbed him in several parts of his body,
the statement said.
Lounis, 37, died Sunday morning in the
hospital, police said. The baby was in in-
tensive care following surgery.
Mob violence, much of it directed at
Haitians, is relatively common in the Do-
minican Republic, where crime is high and
mistrust of police is widespread.
Haiti and the Dominican Republic share
the Caribbean island of Hispaniola and re-
lations between the two neighbors have
been fraught with acrimony for decades.
Mob in Dom Rep kills Haitian father
JINDO---The South Korean ferry that sank
was crippled by confusion and indecision
well after it began listing, a radio transcript
released Sunday showed, suggesting the
chaotic situation may have added to a death
toll that could eventually exceed 300.
About 30 minutes after the Sewol began
tilting, a crew member asked a marine traffic
controller whether passengers would be rescued
if they abandoned ship off South Korea s south-
ern coast. The crew member posed the ques-
tion three times in succession.
That followed several statements from the
ship that people aboard could not move and
another in which someone declared that it
was "impossible to broadcast" instructions.
Many people followed the captain s initial
order to stay below deck, where it is feared
they remain trapped. Sixty-one bodies have
been recovered, and about 240 people are still
"Even if it s impossible to broadcast, please
go out and let the passengers wear life jackets
and put on more clothing," an unidentified
official at Jindo Vessel Traffic Services Center
urged at 9:24 a.m. Wednesday, 29 minutes
after the ferry first reported trouble, according
to the transcript released by South Korea s
"If this ferry evacuates passengers, will you
be able to rescue them?" the unidentified crew
"At least make them wear life rings and
make them escape!" the traffic-center official
"If this ferry evacuates passengers, will they
be rescued right away?" the crew member
"Don t let them go bare --- at least make
them wear life rings and make them escape!"
the traffic official repeated. "The rescue of
human lives from the Sewol ferry ... the captain
should make his own decision and evacuate
them. We don t know the situation very well.
The captain should make the final decision
and decide whether you re going to evacuate
passengers or not."
"I m not talking about that," the crew mem-
ber said. "I asked, if they evacuate now, can
they be rescued right away?"
The traffic official then said patrol boats
would arrive in 10 minutes, though another
civilian ship was already nearby and had told
controllers that it would rescue anyone who
The ferry sank with 476 people on board,
many of them students from a single high
school. The cause of the disaster is not yet
known, but prosecutors have said the ship
made a sharp turn before it began to list.
Several crew members, including the captain,
have been arrested on suspicion of negligence
and abandoning passengers.
More than 170 people survived the sinking
of the Sewol, which had been on its way from
the South Korean port city of Incheon to the
southern island of Jeju. The captain took more
than half an hour to issue an evacuation order,
which several passengers have said they never
The confirmed death toll jumped over the
weekend after divers finally found a way inside
the sunken vessel and quickly discovered more
than a dozen bodies. They had been hampered
for days by strong currents, bad weather and
The South Korean news agency Yonhap
reported that another body was recovered early
Monday near the sunken ship.
Families of the missing are staying on Jindo
Island, where information sheets taped to the
walls of a gymnasium offered details to help
identify any corpses, including gender, height,
length of hair and clothing.
It was too little for Lee Joung-hwa, a friend
of a crew member who is among the miss-
"If only they could have made some kind
of image of the person s face. Who can tell
who this person is just by height and weight?"
A woman with a blue baseball cap shouted
at government officials who were seated nearby,
working at their desks. "I can t live like this!
I m so anxious!" she yelled. "How can I trust
Anguished families, fearful they might be
left without even their loved ones bodies,
vented rage Sunday over the government s
handling of the crisis.
About 100 relatives attempted a long protest
march to the presidential Blue House in Seoul,
about 400 kilometers (250 miles) to the north,
saying they wanted to voice their complaints
to President Park Geun-hye. They walked for
about six hours before police officers in neon
jackets blocked a main road.
"The government is the killer," they shouted
as they pushed against a police barricade.
"We want an answer from the person in
charge about why orders are not going through
and nothing is being done," said Lee Woon-
geun, father of 17-year-old missing passenger
Lee Jung-in. "They are clearly lying and kicking
the responsibility to others."
Earlier Sunday, relatives of the missing
blocked the car of Prime Minister Chung
Hong-won and demanded a meeting with
Park as Chung made a visit to Jindo. Chung
later returned to the gymnasium, but met only
with a number of representatives of the family
members in a side office.
On Sunday evening, dozens of relatives who
gathered at the port in Jindo surrounded the
fisheries minister, Lee Ju-young. They shouted,
swore, yelled threats and pushed him as he
was on his way to a meeting with other offi-
Relatives are desperate to retrieve bodies
before they decompose beyond recognition,
Lee Woon-geun said.
"After four or five days, the body starts to
decay. When it s decayed, if you try to hold
a hand, it might fall off," he said. "I miss my
son. I m really afraid I might not get to find
The Sewol s captain, Lee Joon-seok, 68,
was arrested Saturday, along with one of the
ship s three helmsmen and the 25-year-old
third mate. The third mate was steering at
the time of the accident, in a challenging area
where she had not steered before, and the
captain said he was not on the bridge at the
Senior prosecutor Yang Jung-jin said the
third mate has refused to tell investigators why
she made the sharp turn. Prosecutors have
not named the third mate, but a fellow crew
member identified her as Park Han-kyul.
As he was taken from court in Mokpo on
Saturday, the captain explained his decision
to wait before ordering an evacuation.
"At the time, the current was very strong,
the temperature of the ocean water was cold,"
Lee told reporters, describing his fear that pas-
sengers, even if they were wearing life jackets,
could drift away "and face many other dif-
He said rescue boats had not yet arrived,
and there were no civilian vessels nearby.
Kindergartens hold candles as they pray for safe return of passengers of the sunken ferry
Sewol, in Ansan, South Korea, yesterday. After more than three days of frustration and failure,
divers yesterday finally found a way into the submerged ferry off South Korea's southern
shore, discovering more than a dozen bodies inside the ship and pushing the confirmed death
toll to more than four dozens, officials said. AP PHOTO
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