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The Angolan beach where ships make their last voyages

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Pollution

The Santiago beach north of Luanda is where ships make their last voyages. Named Angola's graveyard of ships, old and worn-out vessels have been sailing here for decades.

The beach is littered with mangled, rusty metal.

The area has become a delight for amateur photographers as beachgoers love posing for pictures on the decaying ships and scrap metal dealers who scavenge for parts for sale.

But not the fishermen who decry the pollution and falling fish stocks.

"This harms our children who bathe, the sailors. Besides this, the boats have ruined many nets, we're not managing to work properly, we're not managing to navigate," said José Sebastião dos Santos, a fisherman.

"All the places that used to be good for fishing are no longer good because everything is taken up with boats. It is a serious problem for us," he said.

The good news is that a public tender has been opened to find a firm to clean up the junk.

Each year, more than a thousand cargo ships go out of service. Many of the vessels end up dumped at ports or being destroyed by shipbreakers in developing countries.

LUSA