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Submarine find recalls World War two tragedy

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Submarine find recalls World War two tragedy


A deep sea discovery could bring to the surface fresh details of a Second World War tragedy.

Off the coast of Romania, divers believe they have located the wreck of a notorious Soviet submarine that disappeared during World War Two.

A Romanian and Dutch team made the find two years ago. But only now are they convinced it is the Shchuka class sub that sunk a ship carrying Jewish refugees.

“The problem was that the wreck was completely covered in seashells, silt and fishnets,” said Dutch diver Harry Bakker. “We have made several dives just to clean the wreck and finally, after we cleaned it, we started to discover some parts that brought us close to the submarine’s identity.”

The discovery of the wreck not far from the port of Constanta has focussed fresh attention on the Struma disaster.

Carrying more than 700 Jewish refugees fleeing Romania to head to the then Palestine, the ship was turned away from the coast of Turkey, and cast out to sea without fuel, food or water. It is thought a Soviet submarine torpedoed it after mistaking it for a German vessel. All but one refugee drowned.

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