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Icebreakers Rush To Free Russian Ship Trapped In Antarctic

The Russian ship is replicating an earlier voyage.
Three icebreaking vessels are on their way to reach a Russian ship that is trapped in ice off the coast of Antarctica.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) said on December 26 it had received a distress message the previous day from the "Akademik Shokalsky," a Russian research vessel with 74 people on board.

However, the AMSA spokesman said the ship is not in any danger.

The "Akademik Shokalsky" is replicating a voyage by explorer Sir Douglas Mawson to the region 100 years ago, conducting the same scientific experiments that he conducted during his 1911-14 Australian Antarctic Expedition.

It is unclear whether the Russian ship will continue its mission or return to New Zealand after it is freed from the ice.

The AMSA said the icebreaking ships should reach the trapped ship late on December 27.

Based on reporting by AFP and ITAR-TASS