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Bangladesh Ferry Carrying Hundreds Sinks

At least six people, including women and children, are dead and hundreds are missing after a heavily laden ferry capsized and sank in central Bangladesh on May 15.

Local officials say the number of passengers aboard the ferry was between 200 and 350.

The ferry was travelling to the southern district of Shariatpur from the capital, Dhaka, when it encountered problems in stormy weather in the Meghna River.

Ferry accidents are common in Bangladesh, which is crisscrossed with more than 230 rivers.

Experts blame poorly maintained vessels, flaws in design, and overcrowding for most of the tragedies.

Storms often hit Bangladesh during the early summer months in the lead-up to the monsoon.

Based on reporting by AFP, Reuters, and dpa