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A cargo ship capsized near a town on Tanzania's coast as a result of which 12 people drowned, Xinhua reported.

Tanga regional police commander Benedict Wakulyamba stated that the vessel was en route from Tanga in mainland Tanzania to Pemba, an island in the Zanzibar archipelago in the Indian Ocean.

At least 28people had been rescued so far in a continuing rescue operation.

Police were still trying to establish how many people were onboard the motorised boat when it went under, which witnesses blamed on powerful waves, the commander said.

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