The wedding guests were crossing to the other side of the river after attending the ceremony in Pathein.
The wedding guests were crossing to the other side of the river after attending the ceremony in Pathein.

At least 20 people drowned as a wooden boat carrying 60 wedding guests sank after smashing into a cargo ship in southwestern Myanmar on Friday.

Thirty people were rescued and some are still missing after the unlit boat collided with a cargo ship on a river in Pathein, a port city west of the commercial capital Yangon.

The wedding guests were crossing to the other side of the river after attending a ceremony in Pathein.

"Altogether 16 women and four men were killed in the boat accident," regional MP Aung Thu Htwe said.

"We estimate nine people are still missing," he said, adding that some 30 people had been rescued alive the night before.

Rescuers were still looking for survivors, witnesses said.

"The authorities at the port are looking into the cause of the crash," said Kyaw Myint, a local government official.

The regional government will help arrange funerals, he said.

Marine accidents are common in Myanmar, where many people rely for transport on crowded and dilapidated boats.

Seventy-three people died in a ferry accident in October last year, and 64 in an accident in March 2015.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies