Belgian authorities have identified a German submarine that went missing over a century ago during World War I.

Submarines were an integral part of the 1914-1918 war and Germany countered Britain's surface fleet in the Atlantic and North Sea with an increasing reliance on U-boats.

One of those was the UB-29, which went missing in 1916. Belgian divers investigated the submarine's wreck in a busy shipping lane off the coast of Belgium earlier this year, and officials were able to identify it after finding the tag of the U-boat.

Historical records show that UB-29 departed on its final mission on 27 November 1916 with 22 German sailors on board.

German Ambassador Ruddier Ludeking said his nation wanted the submarine and the 22 sailors' bodies to remain in their underwater grave.