74 teen survivors of South Korean ferry tragedy back in school

Last Updated 25 June 2014, 10:45 IST

Seventy four South Korean high school students, who survived the Sewol ferry tragedy that claimed over 290 lives, resumed classes Wednesday, nearly two months after the shipwreck.

The South Korean media Wednesday released images of the students aged 16 and 17 years reaching Danwon High School in Ansan, located outside Seoul, early morning accompanied by their parents.

Most of the students had a sad look on their faces and some could not contain their tears on their first day back in school more than two months after the ferry disaster April 16.

"We have a strong hope of regaining our lives prior to the accident. Please, treat us like normal teenagers," requested a student representative who was quoted by the Yonhap news agency.

The parents said in a joint statement that they wanted their children to successfully return to their lives "in spite of the absence of many of their friends and teachers with whom they studied".

In all, 325 students and 14 teachers of Danwon High were part of the 425 people - passengers and crew - who boarded the Sewol ferry on the night of April 15 for a two-day trip to Jeju island.

Only 172 people could be rescued, along with the 74 students who went back to school Wednesday.

Most of them have undergone psychological treatment in the last few months due to the stress and aftermath of the event which is considered one of the worst human tragedies in South Korean history.

The surviving students are to testify as witnesses in late July at the trial of the Sewol captain and crew, who are held partly responsible for the accident. 

(Published 25 June 2014, 10:37 IST)

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