Missing US sailors found dead in ship damaged off Japan: Navy

US Navy destroyer Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan Jun 18, 2017, 03.01 AM (IST)

The US Navy has said the seven sailors who were missing after a destroyer collided with a merchant vessel off the coast of Japan have been found. 

The men were found in areas of the ship that had been flooded after the collision.

AFP reported the Japanese public broadcaster NHK as saying all seven sailors had died.  

Reuters reported the Navy as saying the sailors were being transferred to a US naval hospital where they would be identified.

"The families are being notified and being provided the support they need during this difficult time," it said.

The destroyer, the USS Fitzgerald, collided with the Philippine-flagged merchant vessel more than three times its size some 56 nautical miles southwest of Yokosuka early on Saturday.

Three people were evacuated after the collision to the US Naval Hospital in Yokosuka after the collision, including the ship's commanding officer, Commander Bryce Benson.

Benson was later reported to be in stable condition. 

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