Foreign Minister Westerwelle issued the following statement in Berlin today (17 August):
What we are hearing about the terrible shipping accident in the Philippines is dreadful. I would like to convey our sincere condolences to the Government of the Philippines and to the families of the many people who have lost their lives or are still missing. I hope that large numbers of those missing will be found safe and well having managed to save themselves.
A ferry collided with a cargo ship yesterday off the Visayan Islands in the Philippines. There were hundreds of passengers on board the ferry. Indications so far are that the disaster has claimed at least 28 lives, and more than 200 people remain unaccounted for. There are no reports of any German casualties. The German Embassy in Manila is working flat out to establish the facts.