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Egypt raises death toll from Nile boat collision to 36

The collision late on Wednesday night happened when a passenger boat traveling down the Nile near Cairo collided with a scow

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Egypt's Health Ministry said more bodies have been retrieved from the Nile River from a boat collision earlier this week, bringing the death toll to 36, a civil defense official told Agence France-Presse on Sunday.

Ministry spokesman Hossam Abdel-Ghaffar said 20 children were among the victims. The captain and three of his aides have been accused of manslaughter and placed in temporary detention.

The collision late on Wednesday night happened when a passenger boat traveling down the Nile near Cairo collided with a scow, causing the boat to capsize.

The victims had been celebrating an engagement on the vessel, one of many Egyptians rent on the Nile for outings and celebrations.

The captain of the cargo boat and his assistants were arrested following the accident late on Wednesday in the Warraq district north of Cairo, the authorities said.

Traffic on the Nile has been heavy, especially near Cairo, as Egyptians celebrated the Eid al-Fitr holiday following the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

The Nile river, which runs along the length of Egypt, is dotted with cargo ships, party boats and fishing vessels. In 2011, at least 22 people drowned in southern Egypt when a bus they were in fell into the Nile from a ferry which crashed into the river bank.