Italian divers find wreck of WWI British vessel

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The wreck of a British liner, SS Transylvania, requisitioned to carry troops during World War I and sunk by a German U-boat in 1917, was found Friday off the northern Italian coast, Italian media said.

It was found at a depth of 630 metres (2,066 feet) off the island of Bergeggi near the Ligurian coast, by military divers from Genoa, who were informed of the remains by elderly fishermen from a nearby village, some of whom said they had helped rescue passengers when the vessel sank.

The passenger liner of the Cunard subsidiary Anchor Line, the Transylvania was carrying 3,000 mainly British troops when she was torpedoed and sunk by a German U-63 on May 4, 1917 in the Gulf of Genoa. A total of 407 people died.

The vessel, which had left from the French port of Marseille, was headed to the Turkish front in Palestine.

© 2011 AFP

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