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'27 dead in Australia refugee boat crash'

At least 27 people died in a refugee boat accident off western Australia, Customs officials said on Wednesday, adding that there were 42 survivors but the search and rescue operation was still underway.

world Updated: Dec 15, 2010 14:20 IST

At least 27 people died in a refugee boat accident off western Australia, Customs officials said on Wednesday, adding that there were 42 survivors but the search and rescue operation was still underway.

"As at 1800 (0800 GMT) 41 persons have been recovered from the water, and another person made it to the shore," Customs and Border Protection said in a statement.

"Tragically, initial reports are that 27 bodies have also been recovered at this stage."