Amami Oshima is one of the northern islands in the Ryukyu islands chain that includes Okinawa.
The tanker Sanchi (IMO:9356608), owned by Iran’s top oil shipping operator National Iranian Tanker Co, was carrying almost 1 million barrels of condensate, an ultra-light, highly flammable crude oil, to South Korea.
It collided with the freighter CF Crystal (IMO:9497050) that was carrying grain from the United States about 160 nautical miles (184 km) off China’s coast near Shanghai.
The spokesman said that Chinese authorities turned down an offer from the Japanese Coast Guard to help, saying it would ask for help when needed.
(For a graphic, click bit.ly/2moLgfw)
He said it was not clear if the tanker would drift into Japan’s territorial waters, which are about 280 km (174 miles) away.
The Coast Guard has sent patrol boats and aircraft to get the latest information about the tanker and is monitoring the situation, he said.
The Sanchi had a crew of 32 sailors at the time of the collision. The body of a mariner suspected to be from the ship was recovered on Monday and sent to Shanghai for identification. The rest of the crew, which included 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis, remains missing.
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