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Two divers rescued in Malaysia after disappearing off Mersing; 14-year-old still missing

Indonesian authorities are taking over the search for the remaining diver.

Two divers rescued in Malaysia after disappearing off Mersing; 14-year-old still missing

A board showing photos of divers who went missing off Malaysia's Mersing. (Photo: Bernama)

MERSING: A French woman and British man who disappeared at sea while diving off the coast of Mersing were found safe on Saturday (Apr 9) after drifting for about 100km for two-and-a-half days, Malaysian police said. 

The search for another diver who went missing at the same time, the 14-year-old son of the British man, was expanded to Indonesian waters, authorities added. Although the teenager's body has not been found, his father said he has died at sea.

Alexia Alexandra Molina, 18, from France, and Briton Adrian Peter Chesters, 46, were in a group of four who went missing on Wednesday afternoon on a training dive near Tokong Sanggol, a small island off Mersing.

The group's instructor, Kristine Grodem, 35, from Norway, was rescued on Thursday.

Fishermen spotted Molina and Chesters at around 1am on Saturday off Indonesia's Bintan island, southeast of Singapore and about 100km south of where they went missing, officials said.

They have been taken to hospital in Pasir Gudang in Johor.

"They are in stable condition and under observation, but they are not ready to be interviewed. We will do that as soon as they are ready," Mersing district police chief Cyril Edward Nuing told reporters.

He said Indonesian authorities would take over the search for Chesters' 14-year-old son, Dutch citizen Nathan Renze Chesters, as he had likely drifted into their waters.

“Our Indonesian counterpart has been informed of this matter and they will take over (the operation) in Indonesian waters. However, our assets at sea are always at the ready,” Nuing told a press conference at the Carilamat base set up at the Mersing district council public jetty.

“It is very likely that he is not in Malaysian waters based on the water current and the location of the two divers found this morning," he added.

“At the moment, we cannot officially confirm Nathan’s actual situation but we reckon that he is still alive as we did not see anyone and we regard him as a missing person."

Authorities earlier said the search and rescue operation has expanded, with helicopters, a plane, boats, divers and jet skiers looking at a large area.

Grodem earlier told officials the group surfaced about an hour into their dive on Wednesday but could not find their boat.

She was later separated from the others after being caught in strong currents.

The boat operator who took them to the dive site was detained after testing positive for drugs, police said.

Source: Agencies/rw

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