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A Scramble to Protect Tunisian Waters

Tunisia will work with other countries that have offered to help it to prevent environmental damage after a merchant ship carrying up to 1,000 tons of oil sank in Tunisian waters, the defense ministry said on Sunday. The ship was heading from Equatorial Guinea to Malta when it sank seven miles off the coast of the southern city of Gabes on Friday. The Tunisian navy rescued all seven crew members following a distress call. It was carrying between 750 tons and 1,000 tons of fuel, officials said. The defense ministry did not name the countries that had offered to help, but local media said Italy was expected to send a naval vessel specialized in dealing with marine disasters. A specialized marine diving team has begun work around the ship to check for any oil leakage.