Argentina's navy formally called off the "rescue mission" at the ARA San Juan's home naval base in Mar del Plata today, 15 days after it made its last contact with shore.
The rescue operation to find a missing Argentine submarine has now changed to a search mission, navy spokesman Enrique Balbi told reporters Thursday.
"No one will be rescued", Balbi said.
Balbi said 28 ships, nine planes and 4,000 people from 18 countries were involved in the search covering 557,000 nautical miles; more, including radar monitoring.
Officials have said the submarine had enough air for seven to 10 days when submerged.
The final message from the submarine reported a leak of seawater and the beginnings of a battery fire, but navy Adm. Gabriel Gonzalez said he didn't consider the incident an emergency.
The Argentine navy said it has abandoned attempts to rescue 44 crew members on board a submarine that disappeared two weeks ago. The crew had been ordered to return to a naval base in Mar del Plata after reporting water had entered the vessel through its snorkel.
"I don't understand this arbitrary and unjustified decision", Luis Tagliapietra, the father of 27-year-old crew member Alejandro Tagliapietra, told local TV. The Argentine Navy said an intensive search for it began in the night hours of November 16. President Mauricio Macri has promised a full investigation.
During the $12 million retrofitting, the vessel was cut in half and had its engines and batteries replaced.
"He's the most attractive being that God could have put on my path 13 years ago", she wrote.