Europe

Indonesia to help Dutch investigate missing WWII shipwrecks

  • Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, center, waves after a group photo with Indonesian House Speaker Ade Komarudin, front left, his deputy Fadli Zon, front right, and other members of Indonesian House of Representatives during his visit at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit to the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)

    Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, center, waves after a group photo with Indonesian House Speaker Ade Komarudin, front left, his deputy Fadli Zon, front right, and other members of Indonesian House of Representatives during his visit at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit to the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)  (The Associated Press)

  • Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, center, poses for a group photo with members of Indonesian House of Representatives during his visit at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit to the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)

    Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, center, poses for a group photo with members of Indonesian House of Representatives during his visit at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit to the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)  (The Associated Press)

  • Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, front left, talks as Indonesian House Speaker Ade Komarudin, right, listens during press conference at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit in the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)

    Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, front left, talks as Indonesian House Speaker Ade Komarudin, right, listens during press conference at the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016. Rutte is currently on a three-day visit in the country. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)  (The Associated Press)

Indonesia has offered to help investigate the disappearance of the wreckage of three Dutch warships that sank during World War II off Java island.

Visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said Wednesday that the two countries will work together to determine what happened to the ships that sank in a 1942 battle in the crystal blue Java Sea.

An international investigation found that the wrecks of two of the warships are completely gone, while another has lost most of its pieces.

Some investigators believe scavengers may have looted the wrecks to obtain scrap metal.

The ships, along with three British warships and a U.S. submarine, were sunk by Japanese forces. The British ships are also missing, and Britain has asked Indonesia to protect the area.