Egypt Nile boat accident toll hits 29

Relatives and onlookers gather on the bank of the Nile on July 23, 2015, north of the Egyptian capital Cairo, as the wreckage of a boat is pulled out of the water. The boat sunk when a cargo ship hit it, killing at least 18 people people celebrating an engagement aboard. Police said they had arrested the captain of the cargo boat and his deputy after the accident, one of many that happen on the Nile and off Egypt's coast each year. (AFP)

At least 29 people drowned when their party boat collided with a cargo ship on the Nile, the Egyptian health ministry said on Friday.

The new toll, after police said 19 people had died in the Wednesday night accident north of Cairo, was released after rescuers found more bodies in the river, the health ministry said in a statement.

Rescuers were still searching for more bodies, it said. It was the deadliest such incident on the Nile in years.

The victims had been celebrating an engagement on the vessel, one of many Egyptians rent on the Nile for outings and celebrations.

The captain of the cargo boat and his assistants were arrested following the accident late Wednesday in the Warraq district north of Cairo, the authorities said.

The Nile, which runs along the length of Egypt, is dotted with cargo ships, party boats and fishing vessels.

In 2011, at least 22 people drowned in southern Egypt when a bus they were in fell into the Nile from a ferry which crashed into the river bank.

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