South Korea plans to start salvage of sunken Sewol ferry in September

Relatives of victims of the Sewol disaster during a visit to the site of the sunken ferry on April 15, 2015.

Seoul, South Korea (CNN)The South Korean government has approved plans to begin work in September to raise the passenger ferry that sank last year, killing more than 300 people, officials said Wednesday.

The salvage operation for the ferry, the Sewol, which went down off South Korea's southwestern coast, is expected to take 12 to 18 months, Minister of Oceans and Fisheries Yoo Ki-joon said at a news conference.
President Park Geun-hye pledged last week, on the anniversary of the sinking, that the wreck would be salvaged as soon as possible.
    The bodies of nine out of the 304 people killed in the disaster are still missing. Most of the victims were high school students on a field trip.