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Saturday, January 01, 2005

Thousands of Americans Missing

Among the hundreds of thousands of missing people in Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia, a few thousand are Americans.

THOUSANDS OF AMERICANS STILL MISSING

By RICH CALDER and BILL SANDERSON

January 1, 2005 -- The United States' death toll from the Asian tsunami disaster rose to 15 yesterday, with many more feared dead among the thousands of Americans missing.

State Department spokesman Lou Fintor said eight Americans are confirmed dead in Thailand and seven in Sri Lanka.

"We fear there may be more," Fintor said "We are working on several thousand inquiries about American citizens, and while we have been able to account for many hundreds of those whose families contacted us, new calls comes in constantly. Many hundreds of Americans have been found, but several thousand others have not been located."

In Sri Lanka, another department spokesman, Richard Boucher, said Americans have been showing up at U.S. consular offices wearing bathing suits, with no money and no clothes.

Officials declined releasing the identities of the dead Americans.

More than 120,000 people are confirmed dead worldwide because of Sunday's tsunamis and that number could exceed 500,000 before the final count is in, experts say. (link)

The news gets worse and worse.