KUALA LUMPUR - A Malaysian cargo ship that went missing and was feared hijacked had actually only experienced engine trouble and has been found with all its crew safe, the coast guard said Thursday.
The owners of the Malaysian-registered MV Sah Lian had lost contact with the vessel a week before as it travelled along the coast of the Malaysian state of Sarawak on Borneo island, the coast guard has said.
First Admiral Ismaili Bujang Pit, the state's coast guard chief, had said earlier Thursday the vessel was feared to have fallen prey to the South China Sea's increasingly active pirates, but later said it was found.
"The ship faced engine trouble and was drifting in the South China Sea," he told AFP.
"All crew on board the ship are safe and healthy." The Malaysian coast guard was towing the vessel to the port of Miri, he said.
Ismaili said earlier the crew of 14 included Malaysian, Indonesian, Myanmar, and Indian nationals.