Signals were false hope for Argentine Sub

Signals were false hope for Argentine Sub

Signals were false hope for Argentine Sub

Argentina's defense ministry said it detected seven failed "satellite calls" November 18, which officials believe came from a missing navy submarine.

A vast search by a multinational task force for an Argentinian submarine that went missing in the South Atlantic, with 44 crew members four days ago has so far failed to provide any clues as to its possible location.

On Monday, navy spokesman Enrique Balbi confirmed that "the seven attempted calls did not come from the submarine's satellite phone".

HMS Protector has arrived in the search area around which global efforts to find and rescue an Argentine submarine reported missing in the South Atlantic Ocean are centred.

Balbi said the position was in line with the course the submarine would have taken to reach its base in the northeastern city of Mar del Plata after reporting a breakdown last week and then going incommunicado.

"We are processing this information", Balbi said.

Argentine, US, British, Chilean, and Brazilian military personnel are scouring the area in ships and aircraft.

"Right now, we have waves of six to eight metres high with west to southwest winds of 40 knots, and unfortunately it appears that these conditions will remain for the next 48 hours", he said.

A multinational air and sea search is under way with help from countries including Brazil, Britain, Chile, the United States and Uruguay.

Submarines ARA San Juan, ARA Salta and ARA Santa Cruz upon arrival to Mar del Plata's Navy Base on June 13, 2014.

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This is the first time that an official has mentioned the sub encountering mechanical problems.

"They have a lot of hope".

All land communications bases along the coast were ordered to scan for any follow-up signals, as family members of the missing waited nervously in the coastal city of Mar del Plata. "We don't know anything, we're desperate", said Cristina Ramallo, whose brother Javier is on board.

The submarine's fate has gripped the nation, and President Mauricio Macri visited the relatives and prayed with them on Monday.

Seven brief satellite calls over the past few days to Armada Argentina bases may have been made by the submarine's crew. Words written on the flag read "Argentina, be strong".

SOUTHCOM directed the deployment of the P-8A aircraft, underwater rescue teams and personnel to assist Argentina as support, the country request for global assistance to locate the missing submarine and crew.

Its last contact with the navy command was on Wednesday morning. These systems carry sonars that can be used to search for the sub on the bottom, helping to direct a rescue attempt. A Navy inquiry said the cause could not be definitively determined.

One Naval P-8 arrived in Argentina over the weekend, and another is arriving today.

Sixty-five meters long and seven meters wide, it was built by Germany's Thyssen Nordseewerke and launched in 1983.

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